The new exhibit Re-Visions features still-lives, portraits, classical nudes and narrative pieces in styles ranging from abstract to realistic. To an unobserving eye, this doesn’t look ground breaking. If someone takes a closer look around the room and they will notice there are actually some fresh takes on these common themes from painting.
With distinct brushwork and intriguing perspective present in many of the pieces, the artists featured in this show obviously believe that what they paint is just as important as how they are painting it.
The standout artist of the show, Matthew Litteken, demonstrates this notion foremost in two of his works. In “The Difference between One and One” and “After Dinner Mint” he paints close up views of both a one and two dollar bill, respectively. Money, specifically a one dollar bill, is one of the most common and mundane objects people come into contact with on a daily basis, yet Litteken transforms inconsequential green paper into a luscious construction of red paint.
While Litteken’s technique of sculpting shapes with paint is stunning, it is his underlying comment on art that is most attractive. In taking an ordinary dollar bill, symbol of banality, and converting it into a work of art he initiates a debate about what finally designates an object as a work of art. In other words, a dollar is just a dollar when its sits in your wallet. But that same dollar becomes a valid work of art once it is put in a frame on the wall of a gallery.
Jason Franz reinvigorates statues from antiquity in his series. Through forceful brushwork and severe cropping, he injects Greek relics with new life. For all their