Category Archives: Western Contemporary Art

Our Majestic Parks: Ziemienski at Altamira Fine Art

Dennis Ziemienski, Stone Bridge Over the Merced, Yosemite National Park. Oil on Canvas 40 x 30 "

Dennis Ziemienski, Stone Bridge Over the Merced, Yosemite National Park. Oil on Canvas. 40×30″

In Dennis Ziemienski’s new show “Celebrating Our National Parks” at Altamira Fine Art, our parks are monumental. Man’s presence, for the most part, is small and humbling. In every image, you’ll find homage and acknowledgement that they, the parks, were here before us; and they, not us, are Earth’s great achievements.

DENNIS ZIEMIENSKI: CELEBRATING OUR NATIONAL PARKS, is on exhibit at Altamira Fine Art in Jackson, Wyoming, August 15-27, with an opening reception on Thursday, August 18, 5-8:00 pm. 

Dennis Ziemienski Old Faithful Geyser, Yellowstone National Park Oil on Canvas 48 x 30 inches

Dennis Ziemienski
Old Faithful Geyser, Yellowstone National Park
Oil on Canvas
48 x 30 “

As I write, 11 works from the show are posted on Altamira’s website; two have already sold. Ziemienski’s painting has always been marked by an appreciation of all things vintage. At times I’ve felt his work can be a little too obvious, but in this show, being obvious about color, scale and our precious parks is the point. These are spectacular tributes to some of America’s greatest treasures: Yellowstone, Grand Teton National Park, Arches National Park, Glacier , Yosemite and Devil’s Tower National Monument. This year is the National Park Centennial, and if you are one of the millions whose lives are deeply affected by personal park experience; if these wild and gorgeous places have made their mark on your soul, then you are bound to be transported by this tremendous exhibit.

Works reflect National Parks grandeur and scale. Ziemienski’s smallest painting measures 18 x 24″, and the largest canvas is 36 x 48″.

“The stunning beauty, history and wildlife provides an unlimited source of inspiration and subject matter for my paintings.” ~ Dennis Ziemienski

Growing up near Yosemite, I spent many summers there. Two decades ago I moved to Jackson Hole and Grand Teton National Park; stepping off the plane here for the first time my pulse quickened, stunned by the Tetons’ visual impact. Those halcyon summer months spent at Yosemite’s lakes, beneath the waterfalls, hiking valleys, camping in the pines~~I can smell it. I thought I’d lost that sense memory forever. Thank goodness, I was wrong.

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Turner Lightens Up at Trio Fine Art; Trailside’s Western Spirit

2016 Light on the Land

Kathryn Mapes Turner, "Grace," 40 x 30" oil on linen.

Kathryn Mapes Turner, “Grace,” 40 x 30″ oil on linen.

“I believe that humans can learn from the example set by animals to live sustainably on the planet. In this way, they live life ‘light on the land.’” ~ Kathryn M. Turner 

Transluscent light plays a big role in the artist’s upcoming exhibition “Light on the Land,” going on exhibit August 17th at Trio Fine Art, in Jackson, Wyoming. An opening reception will be be held August 18th, 5-8:00 pm at the gallery.

Plein air painter Kathryn Mapes Turner’s work has taken on a sheer, misty quality. Subject matter is not quite attached to this earth. It floats. Turner wields her brush to create an airy, misty atmosphere, quite in contrast to this region’s massive solidity and sheer tonnage.

It’s a style of painting the artist has embraced for some time. Often, Turner’s brushstrokes are diluted, and canvas texture becomes part of a painting; oils are so sparingly used they can be mistaken for watercolors.

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Wildlife, Outside In

KOLLABS, Jake, 2016 Mixed Media, 12 x 12 in.

KOLLABS, Jake, 2016
Mixed Media, 12 x 12 in.

What if wildlife entered our homes, our environment and, well, got comfortable?

How would we react?

That’s the question artists Luis Garcia-Nerey and Anke Schofield, working together as “KOLLABS,” ask.

KOLLABS’ art, represented by Diehl Gallery  in a new show of KOLLABS (col’-lab-or-a-tive?) mixed media works depict wildlife in unnatural settings. These images bring fairytales and literary anthropomorphism to mind: Three Little Pigs, Red Riding Hood, Mr. Popper’s Penguins and Harvey. 

I’m “translating” here, but my reading is that KOLLABS believes society intentionally assigns objects to certain spaces because society is programmed to believe that’s where any given object belongs. KOLLABS hopes their art succeeds in helping us “flip the traditional way we view wildlife [by] placing them [in human] environments.”

KOLLABS: NEW WORKS’ opening reception takes place August 9th, 5-8:00 pm, at the Tram Club, base of the Teton Club, next to Walk Festival Hall in Teton Village In this Diehl satellite show, exhibition sales in part support the Grand Teton Music Festival.  From August 10 – September 6, viewings are by appointment only. 

Senses, surrounded.

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Nature is That “Nameless Thing”

Jennifer Hoffman Gessler, Morning Glory. 8x10"

Jennifer Hoffman, Morning Glory. 8 x10″ Oil

“There is something beyond explanation when an artist is drawn to a subject,” writes Jackson Hole artist Jennifer Hoffman. “Maybe it’s a bit of light or some familiar memory that is stirred, or some emotion the scene recalls. I’ve heard other artists refer to it as a sense of mystery or magic. My desire to paint the landscape around us (or any subject) goes beyond just copying its visual qualities.”

“That Nameless Thing” is the title of Hoffman’s newest show at Trio Fine Art, located just north of the Town Square in Jackson, Wyoming. She took the title from the writings of the deceased artist Emily Carr, an artist working in the early 1900’s associated with Canada’s “Group of Seven.”  Carr’s book “Hundreds and Thousands: the journals of Emily Carr” is Hoffman’s source.

While a variety of subjects, sizes and mediums fill the show, Hoffman has one ultimate goal: “I hope to catch something of that ‘nameless thing’,” she says. Hoffman was recently quite successful at capturing nature~~her serene, mirror-like painting of Flat Creek won “Honorable Mention” at the recent “Plein Air for the Park” Show and Sale.

“I love the patterns, colors, and textures of the mineral deposits, the steam, the reflective quality of the water.  I love the abstractness of the forms.” ~ Jennifer Hoffman

Jennifer Hoffman, "From Within." 12 x 16" Oil Pastel

Jennifer Hoffman, “From Within.” 12 x 16″ Oil Pastel

I’ve followed Hoffman closely over the years, and over those years she has consistently demonstrated her great gift for delving ever deeper into a scene. She is able to “translate” a landscape, wild creatures and still lifes into surprising, yet evocative works of art. Her draftsmanship is nothing short of impeccable, but she’s able to keep us from thinking of composition in its most basic terms because we are carried away by the poetry in her paintings.  One 30 x 30″ pastel of a thawing Hoback River is Hoffman’s largest pastel work to date.

Jennifer Hoffman at work.

The artist at Flat Creek

I’d go so far as to say Hoffman is channeling a bit of Abstract Expressionism. Helen Frankenthaler, are you in the air?

Yellowstone’s thermal areas are obviously beautiful.  Of course they draw many, many visitors because of their drama and unique physicality,” Hoffman observes. “I love the patterns, colors, and textures of the mineral deposits, the steam, the reflective quality of the water.  I love the abstraction of form.”

Jennifer Hoffman, "Transition," 16 x 20" Pastel

Jennifer Hoffman, “Transition,” 16 x 20″ Pastel

In this show you’ll find the fantastic, the sweet secrets of nature, a commanding use of color and light, and fall in love.

“That Nameless Thing” opens at Trio Fine Art on July 27th, and remains on exhibition through August 13th. An Opening Reception takes place Thursday, July 28th, 5-8:00 pm. Hoffman will give a talk at 6:00 pm. All work will be viewable online by July 25th. Visit www.triofineart.com ,  and contact the gallery at 307-734-4444. Email:   jen@jlholhoffmanfineart.com 

 

 

 

Jackson Hole Art Auction: The Menu

Charles M. Russell (1864–1926) Menu (Cafe Noir) (ca. 1896) watercolor and pencil on paper 6 x 4 (sight) in  Estimate: $40,000–$60,000

Charles M. Russell (1864–1926)
Menu (Cafe Noir) (ca. 1896) watercolor and pencil on paper 6 x 4 (sight) in
Estimate: $40,000–$60,000

This year’s Jackson Hole Art Auction is two months away; time flies. After all, it’s summer and high art season in Jackson, Wyoming. Stay on your toes, keep a daily eye out for new auction lots! Get your consignments in on time~~2015’s deadline opportunity has likely evaporated. So many impressive consignments arrive at auction headquarters, upstairs at Trailside Gallery, that some must be put forward for your consideration.

Whether it’s market confidence or simply a new method of expanding their buying audience, the auction spreads itself over two days this year, with two separate buying events. The auction, a premier venue for Western masterworks, begins September 18th, 2015.

“The ninth annual Jackson Hole Art Auction will begin with Session I held on Friday, September 18th at Trailside Galleries in Jackson, WY. Session I will be a small well-curated sale of lots by highly desirable contemporary and deceased artists. Session II will be held on Saturday, September 19th at the Center for the Arts,” notes the auction. Both events include free, open-to-the-public preview opportunities.

E. Martin Hennings, Untitled. 18.5 x 15 1/4".  Oil $40,000 -$60,000

E. Martin Hennings, Untitled. 18.5 x 15 1/4″. Oil $40,000 -$60,000

So, what’s on the auction menu? It’s impossible to provide a full list in this space, but highlights include historic and contemporary works by Bierstadt, C.M. Russell, Bob Kuhn, Carl Rungius, Howard Terpning, Z.S. Liang, Remington, E. Martin Hennings, Clyde Aspevig, Richard Schmid, Harry JacksonEanger Irving Couse, T. Allen LawsonStanley Meltzoff and William Acheff.

Bob Kuhn (1920–2007) Winter Browse - Mule Deer (1995)

Bob Kuhn (1920–2007) Winter Browse – Mule Deer (1995) Acrylic on Board  14×18″ Estimate: $40,000 – $60,000

Lot estimates range anywhere from four digits to seven.

Though not an official part of Jackson Hole’s famed Fall Arts Festival, the auction is a heady and highly anticipated conclusion to Jackson’s official arts season. Live Western auctions cause attendees and staff to break out in goosebumps. This thing is full of adrenaline~~the auction has become one of the country’s top Western art auctions, each year offering up exquisite paintings, sculptures and artifacts. A co-production of Jackson’s Trailside Galleries and Santa Fe’s Gerald Peters Gallery, the auction is an upscale, professionally organized and thrilling event.

Visit www.jacksonholeartauction.com for information, or phone Auction Coordinator Jill Callahan at (866)-549-9276.

Albert Bierstadt (1830–1902) Wind River Country Wyoming (ca. 1860) oil on canvas 28 1/4 x 39 1/2 in Estimate: $1,000,000–$2,000,000

Albert Bierstadt (1830–1902)
Wind River Country Wyoming (ca. 1860)
oil on canvas
28 1/4 x 39 1/2 in
Estimate: $1,000,000–$2,000,000