ARTisSpectrum Vol. 31, May 2014 - page 78

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ARTisSpectrum | Volume 31 | artisspectrum.com
I
n his sculptures,
Frank Lorenzo
takes his ability to depict
objects and human figures with faithful accuracy, and turns
it toward another level of reality. His unique perspective pulls
the subjects he represents into an alternate universe, using what
he calls “anatomical disproportion” to physically embody the
emotional state of his subjects. While each part of his figures is
shown with the utmost realism, the relationship between those
parts follows a highly expressionistic path. Heads will appear to
be abnormally small, torsos will extend to unexpected lengths,
and the gestures of the people he shows us at times assume the
kind of distortions that one would expect to find in a funhouse
mirror.
Modeling all of his pieces by hand in clay, the artist brings a
variety of approaches and materials into his work. “I use the
techniques of raku, glazes and enamels,” he says, referring to the
Japanese style of hand-thrown pottery used in tea ceremonies.
That delicacy of touch allows him to catch the smallest physical
details with precise clarity while his free, distinctive take on
proportion and gesture injects a freedom and raw power into
his sculptures. It is a combination that gives his work a unique
energy, finely balanced between stillness and motion, classicism
and the thoroughly contemporary.
Crucifixion Ceramic 12” x 11” x 8”
Frank Lorenzo
B
y turns bold and delicate,
Alan McKee
’s large digital
images project the possibilities of photography into
the future. A self-described “digital painter,” McKee draws
inspiration from the Japanese woodblock prints of ukiyo-e,
the color and spatial dynamic of the Abstract Expressionists
and from the Impressionists’ dream of “painting with light,”
which is realized in his use of a Wacom pressure sensitive
drawing tablet.
Under McKee’s alchemy, these elements unite in unique and
wholly modern images. Each piece begins with a photograph
capturing a detail of an organic form– grass, leaves, branches
– stripped of context, color-treated, and left to float. McKee
then builds a completely synthetic composition around
this real world image. Within a surprisingly formal, graphic
arrangement, he introduces streamlined shapes and bold
contrasts of color to reshuffle the meaning of realism and
the art of photography. The work only starts with a camera;
it becomes a work of art when transformed by the artist’s
hand and vision.
McKee was born in Manhattan, and grew up hearing his mother, well-known artist Marjorie McKee, discuss art and its
spiritual aspects with friends such as Jackson Pollack, Harry Jackson, Hans Hoffman, Willem de Kooning and Clement
Greenberg. He has exhibited extensively in Canada and is a writer as well as an artist.
Nest Light Jet Print on Paper, Face Mounted on Plexiglas 48” x 48”
Alan McKee
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