After a long winter’s lull, Spring is around the corner. If you can’t feel it in the air, you can feel it in Jackson’s art scene. In the past two weeks, art happenings popped up like crocus in 50- degree weather!
Teton Art Lab’s “Wallpaper” show was extraordinary. The Lab’s combination gallery-and-artists’ work space packed up like sardines for the show, and by the time I arrived at least two-thirds of the art had sold.
You might as well call it “The Red Dot Show.”
The magic~~and it IS magic~~springs (there’s that word again) from founder Travis Walker’s vision. In addition to being represented by Altamira Fine Art, Walker’s deep comprehension of Jackson’s young art scene and what new (as well as established) collectors are looking for at an Art Lab event offers a great marketing lesson. When attendees arrive, they already know what the vibe will be: comfortable and loose. Probably a little loud, filled with music and chatter, wine flowing. Available to purchase for as little as $30 and as high as $300-ish, were dozens of moderate to oversized prints, paintings, sketches and even a selection of ceramics. All local art.
Buyers know what they want to spend and what they’ll be able to get for their money. They go home happy. Walker doesn’t over-do this event, and not overdoing it keeps mojo fresh, energy high, and anticipation sharp. It’s a huge relief to KNOW that you’re going in to buy something you love for an affordable price. And you’re buying art from artists who, not long ago, were struggling here in Jackson. Now, they’re “names.” They’re making it, and on the art map, big time. They are a distinct Jackson ECONOMIC DEMOGRAPHIC.
Altamira Fine Art Scottsdale has an exciting new show.
March 9th marks the official opening of “Shelter/Edge of Town,” a two-man show of works by artists Jared Sanders and Robert McCauley. Both artists will be in attendance opening night at Altamira’s Scottsdale gallery. Sanders, well-known here in Jackson, is participating in his third Altamira Scottsdale exhibition, and we can assume his work is well received!
This is the first Altamira show for McCauley, and his fantasy-totemic-metaphorical works are very fresh to my eye; an attention-grabbing, bold new look at the West and its inhabitants, the wild and the foolhardy. We’re foolhardy, and McCauley’s animals are symbolic of human intervention. Wildlife pose questions to us about their own future on the planet.
“Two image types, both with the same content,” writes McCauley. “The environment. My work, though at this point it centers on the American Black Bear, is not about the bear. It’s equally not about my style of paint handling. Both approaches are the only voice I have for a diatribe on how we’re doing as custodians for this planet.”
When I look at Sanders’ barns and other rural structures, so geometrically precise and alone, I see an artist exploring his connection to the bones of those buildings.
“Every painting in this show has a home, a barn or some kind of shelter,” says Sanders. “When I see a structure in the open parts of the land, it personalizes that piece of land for somebody, or maybe for all of us. On the highways and back roads of America is where I find all of my inspiration for the work.”
Two approaches to Earth as shelter, Earth as home for all its life forms.
“Shelter/Edge of Town” remains on exhibit through March 18th. www.altamiraart.com