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Gestalt: German Artists in Conversation & Introducing Roger Derrick in his first solo exhibition

Skylight Gallery NYC
538 West 29th Street, Second floor, 212-629-3131 x248
Chelsea
July 25 - August 26, 2011
Reception: Thursday, August 4, 6 - 9 PM
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“gestalt: German artists in conversation” comes to Skylight Gallery in Chelsea

Group show featuring German artists – Romy Campe (Berlin) Heinz ‘HEGO’ Gövert (Herdecke) Michaela Günther (Gelsenkirchen) Manfred Holtkamp (Wetter) Dr. Jorge-Luis Maeso-Madronero (Witten) Dagmar Oeser (Unna) Maria Pitseleh (native German, currently living in Barcelona)

(New York, NY) – Skylight Gallery in Chelsea, New York City presents its next exhibition, a group show of established and emerging German artists called “Gestalt: German artists in conversation” from July 25 through August 26, with an opening reception on Thursday evening, August 4 from 6 to 9. The gallery will also be participating in the Chelsea Art Walk on Thursday evening, July 28 from 5 to 8.

The show is a broad survey of various artists creating contemporary visual art throughout Germany, both in major art centers like Berlin as well as smaller hotspots located in the North Rhine-Westphalia region. This corresponds to the gallery’s domestic agenda, which pairs New York City artists with established New York State regional artists, mostly from the art-rich Hudson Valley region, in two person shows. The visual conversation that ensues between urban and rural artists has become the exciting hallmark that has made previous Skylight shows such a success, and Gallery Director Carla Goldberg believes that the conversation among the various German artists in the gestalt show bring a similar dynamic to the table. “We are always interested here in the artists themselves, in addition to their work; how they came to this place in their creative careers, and how they are influenced both by place and by other artists,” says Goldberg. “In Germany, even more of the general population makes creating serious art part of their daily practice, regardless of their aspirations or day jobs, much like Americans might garden, cook or craft. I believe this phenomenon is an interesting clue to the contemporary German character, and might lead us to more closely examine how art is viewed through American eyes, as something that only ’certain people’ pursue. What does that say about us, and what does that say about them?”

The show covers a variety of work from figurative to lyric abstraction and even art that blurs the boundaries between visual art and performance, utilizing human bodies as the canvas.

Romy Campe creates multimedia pieces on wood panels that focus on extreme close-ups of the human face, mostly caught in mid strong expression. Her intent is to capture through these almost unnervingly intimate views of her subjects the mental and emotional energy that defines the human condition; the strictly human ability to create new worlds, ideas and futures through our own minds, both blocking and releasing the energy that exists in nature and that our reactions transform.

Lyric Abstractionists Heinz ‘HEGO’ Gövert, Michaela Günther and Dagmar Oeser each explore the canvas plane through creating a pictorial structure that juxtaposes color relationships and spatial tensions in their multimedia works.

HEGO, a former rock and blues drummer of note, continues his musical exploration of emotion and mood in his pieces, “riffing” on such topical subjects as the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster, friends from Libya arrested prior to the uprising, and his own series of recent heart attacks. His paintings feature pure and bright acid tones, or as he calls them “screaming colors”, piercing a normally darker or more murky ground.

Ms. Günther’s pieces harken back to her experience as a chemist, colors undifferentiated between each other, mingling but unmixed. She seeks in her work to capture the secrets of time and transience.

Ms. Oeser turns her ideas, or “inner pictures“, into open dialogues with the viewer, her wispy pinks and blues pulled down to earth and made somber and foreboding through dark, stacked shaped background forms.

Similarly, Dr. Jorge-Luis Maeso-Madronero explores the power of color in his abstract work, but is more drawn to monochromes and the richness and depth found within a single bold color field, his textures sometimes taking on an almost raku-like effect.

Manfred Holtkamp’s wood panels and sculptures play on the natural properties of each of the various woods he chooses, augmented by both his structural treatment of each piece and his adding of an artificial “grain” of paint, ash, acid or other media as a counterpoint to the natural pattern of that particular type of wood itself. The qualities of each piece become a response to the call of the material in front of him.

Finally, Maria Pitseleh leaves the canvas entirely, choosing instead to create her fantasy worlds by painting on the naked human form (shown photographically in this show), her models’ movement through pose, dance or expression changing the work from moment to moment, while underlining the deliberately temporary nature of her creations.

Introducing Roger Derrick: In his first Solo Exhibition- In Similar Fashion Skylight Gallery NYC- In the Project Space

Skylight Gallery’s project space presents Roger Derrick: In Similar Fashion, July 25 to August 26 – In conjunction with the Show, Gestalt: German Artists In Conversation featuring artist from Skylight Gallery’s sister gallery in Berlin, this summer exhibition is not one to pass by.

Previewing works from his most recent series, In Similar Fashion includes both traditional mixed media works on paper, as well as select paintings in oil. Roger Derrick’s distinct style reveals evidence of trained illustrative procedures, fused with the fine art sensitivity of a true portrait artist. While technique and hand control are clearly evident in his method, Derrick also reveals his versatility through the swift confidence in select areas of his media application. Highly inspired by fashion artists of past and present, as well as the technical aptitude of the greatest academic masters, Roger Derrick’s work is visually captivating at immediate glance and remains meticulous in approach. It’s further consideration of these highly coveted accessories, which begins to elevate them into the realm of metaphorical representation. Above all, Derrick’s progressive outlook on his comprehensive series is beyond promising.

According to Roger Derrick, shoes will always have the ability to make a statement, cause intrigue, desire, or even distaste. When using them as his subjects, it enables viewers to focus more on the character traits they possess, while further contemplating the absence of their keeper.

Skylight Gallery shows work by mostly New York State Artists and a little beyond the borders. Our series of exhibitions this season features a conversation of artworks between artists based in the Hudson Valley and artists based in Manhattan and the boroughs. Typically the artists we exhibit have developed and honed their visual voice, having studied and made art for decades. Occasionally, we show exceptional young talent whose work is mature beyond their years.

Gallery hours: Monday through Friday, 10am till 4pm (variable), Saturday noon till 5pm The gallery is located on the second floor at 538 W 29th Street in New York City, between 10th and 11th Avenues. More information is available at skylightgallerynyc.com.

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