Thursday, October 04, 2007

Jo Hormuth and John Phillips

Grand Valley State University
Grand Rapids, Michigan

Thursday, October 4 – Friday, November 2, 2007

Opening Reception: Thursday, October 4, 2007

Jo Hormuth and John Phillips met on the phone during the summer of 1983.
They have lived and worked together ever since.
John is a painter.
Jo works with everything else.
This is their first exhibition together...

Open to the Public

Jo Hormuth

Jo’s work swings between the coolly elegant and the flat out funny, enlisting
a diversity of means and media while employing simple conceptual strategies
to decidedly poetic ends. She transforms “the familiar” to create situations
that become springboards for the viewer to consider many relationships,
contradictions and possibilities. Concepts of repetition, similarity, and
difference are directly engaged as well as scale changes, unlikely materials,
use and context. Humor is embraced—and she believes, as Man Ray did,
that it is the best communicator. Formalism is undermined by subjective
content and apparent contradictions abound in the work in terms of materials
or presentation. According to Joanna Drucker: “the object is in direct but
complementary contradiction to its thingness.” Jo aims to work the gap
where life and culture overlap.

John Phillips

John works abstract painting’s middle ground by mixing a high-minded
seriousness and deadpan humor—a tug-of-war between intelligence and indulgence.
He once remarked that “if Barnett Newman had had a lava lamp, it might look like
my paintings.” Think Disney channeling Mondrian. To quote Ann Wiens, “These
complex abstractions employ a battery of mod shapes and startling colors that flipflop
against one another, laying out the essential elements of abstract painting—
form, color, space, balance—in a decidedly hip artistic slang.” The work confronts
the viewer with a visual event that dwells upon its narrative structure, implying
and denying order in an open-ended way. His very deliberate manipulations
of visual language challenge perception while at the same time unabashedly
engaging pleasure.
web sites:

Fall Arts Celebration
Art Gallery Exhibit
Opening reception with the artists
Thursday, October 4, 5 –7 p.m.
Exhibition open
October 4 –November 2
M–F 10 a.m.–5 p.m. and Th 10 a.m.–7 p.m.
Private tours available available by appointment, call 616-331-2564

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