Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Neal Walsh, William Schaff

From my review of Neal T. Walsh and William Schaff at 5 Traverse gallery:
Providence artist Neal Walsh’s great new abstract paintings bring to mind peeling paint, rust, and cracking plaster in old mills or houses, maybe the wall in the hall of an apartment building. On view at 5 Traverse gallery — along with work by Warren’s William Schaff — they embody the romance of ruins, capturing a particularly Providence love of old buildings and their majestic rot. But they also reach toward humanity’s ancient awe of ruins from Egypt to Greece to Mexico — to Edward Hopper’s sagging Victorian homes and tired city streets.
Read the rest here.

Neal T. Walsh and William Schaff, 5 Traverse, 5 Traverse St., Providence, April 11 to May 3, 2008.

Pictured from top to bottom: Neal Walsh’s “Dry Salvages,” 2007, and William Schaff’s “Cornered Eagle,” 2008.


Blogger Mr. J. Cook said...

Here at NEJAR you've identified Walsh's painting as "Dry Salvages" (a name drawn, presumably, from the outcroppings off Rockport, MA and/or from the T.S. Eliot's poem of that name in _Four Quartets_) whereas in the _Phoenix_ you've identified the painting as "The Clearing".

If possible please provide disambiguation for my own aesthetic research.

best wishes,

April 23, 2008 at 4:02 PM  
Blogger Greg Cook said...

These are two different Walsh paintings – "The Clearing" at the Phoenix, and "Dry Salvages" here. Walsh told me he found titles for some of the works in things he was reading (Sharon Olds, Michael Ondaatje), and drew others from paper scraps collaged into the paintings. So I expect “Dry Salvages” comes from Eliot, but my notes suggest that I somehow neglected to ask him about it.

April 23, 2008 at 4:50 PM  
Blogger Mr. J. Cook said...

What an embarrassing error on my part!

I somehow failed to notice that the "rootbeer brown" 1/2 of "The Clearing" is on the left and of "Dry Salvages" is on the right (& may not even be "rootbeer brown"). I also seem to have overlooked the difference between gray & light blue. Etc.

As for a literary reference for "The Clearing" I found the following possibilities: a 1994 Louis Simpson poem in the Southern Review, a 1955 Robert Graves poem in The New Yorker, and Frost's book _In the Clearing_ with the poem "A Cabin in the Clearing".

O.K. I'll now return to my aesthetic, metaphysical, and psychogeographic research.


April 23, 2008 at 8:54 PM  

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