PaperCity Magazine

November 2015 - Houston

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THE HOME COURT OF MARK FLOOD • KINGDOM OF GRAFFITI • THE ART SPACE NAMED FOR TOILET PAPER • SERVING NEW TALENT + SUNDAY SOUP • WHERE A ROME PRIZE WINNER SHOWS • GET ON THE BUS • MEET THE G SPOT • A POWER REDHEAD'S IN CHARGE • MULTIMEDIA MASH-UP OF MUSIC, ART AND FASHION • SPEAKING ITALIAN AT 4411 POWER of TEN ROMPING THROUGH HOUSTON'S NEWEST ART SPACES WITH CATHERINE D. ANSPON. PHOTOGRAPHY MAX BURKHALTER, JENNY ANTILL CLIFTON, MARC NEWSOME AND AULIYA FLORY. T oday's most intriguing art turf extends beyond Colquitt, Isabella Court and 4411 Montrose. While those are important destinations for acquisitions, smart collectors and curators also sleuth off-the-radar haunts — traveling to the edges of downtown or venturing into a residential neighborhood in the East End. Midtown, Montrose and the Heights also promise new visual ventures. Then 4411 gets a new gallery. Here's how the art tale unfolds with this cache of 10 spaces bursting upon the scene — some opening days ago, as well as those freshly minted within the last 24 months. Y ou won't forget the disarming title of this art space anytime soon: Scott Charmin Gallery. Owner/gallerist/ artist Edgar Meza decided two of the leading toilet paper brands were perfect inspiration for his residence turned destination gallery. An occasional assistant to Mark Flood, the HSPVA grad is an apt talent scout, armed with an MFA from State University New York (SUNY) at Purchase and a BFA from the University of Houston. Meza's dream to own a gallery is being fulfilled thanks to a loan from an investor in the art world; now he's turning a modest residence in the Harrisburg neighborhood where he was raised into a hipster haven where some incredible painters are being shown, including the next big thing, Dylan Roberts. Even Texas Gallery's Fredericka Hunter has come calling to check it out. On our visit, a Roberts canvas hung in the kitchen, while in the front viewing rooms, Portland artist/former Houston talent Jonathan Casella's nifty canvas emitted a post-conceptual/ post-modern vibe reminiscent of Frank Stella in the 1980s — and were a steal, with amply scaled paintings going for a mere $1,800. Don't forget to check out Meza's own studio in a spare bedroom, where nihilist paintings — bearing a black flag and text admonitions — are taking shape. Friday, November 13, Meza opens Public Storage- exhibited, about-to-be-red-hot Michael Bhichitkul. Scott Charmin Gallery, 504 78th St., 281.745.4885, By appointment only, except during openings. BOWING TO THE MASTERS AT MIDTOWN Z oya Tommy is sitting in the catbird seat at her new Midtown roost — a prime corner in a studio complex adjoining DiverseWorks, a block from Isabella Court's dealers. Months in the making, Tommy's new digs represent at least the fifth iteration of the Rhode Island School of Design grad's career as a gallerist including pop-ups in borrowed spaces, a pair of previous Midtown locales and, most recently, a spot at 4411 Montrose. Moving up to 2,500 square feet, Tommy again returns to a building brushed with history: the former 1920s-era Cleburne Cafeteria, which later was HQ for Frankel's Costumes. Tapping Dutch architect Piet Kemp — whose brother is her husband, painter Guus Kemp, also one of the staples in her stable — Tommy's new home features beautiful windows with original architectural flourishes intact, a new loft for office duties, abundant storage and movable walls for a variety of exhibition configurations. At the inaugural show in September, painter Earl Staley held court — a Rome Prize winner who's one of the patriarchs of our scene. Not content to rest on past laurels, Staley crafted wildly exuberant abstractions that channel some of the language and syntax of Aboriginal artists. Opening Friday, November 6, Houston painter Marco Villegas' newest conceptual geometric series paired with mid-career abstract painter Lindsey Nobel, known for her scientific/ planetary focus. Zoya Tommy, 4102 Fannin St., 832.649.5814, CASA AS WHITE CUBE + CHEEKY NAME A fter months-long vacancies, 4411 Montrose now percolates with fresh energy. Besides a Zen garden pop-up curated by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston's Christine Starkman (see our arts blog for details), Unix Gallery stakes a permanent claim to the ground-floor space recently occupied by The Mission. Milan-born owner Alex Cesaria — his other gallery is based in Chelsea — opens his second outpost of Unix, tapping David Solomon (formerly a director with the iconic Riva Yares Gallery in Santa Fe) to helm the new Houston space. Cesaria and Solomon made an impressive debut with a group sampling of artists, including intriguing headliners Italian grand master painters/Venice Biennale- exhibited Marcello Lo Giudice and Pino Manoe, whose spatial improvisations remind the viewer of Fontana. Houston expressionist Alfredo Scaroina, whose canvases reverberate with a Latin beat, also joins the stable; we were also won over by Desire Obtain Cherish's edgy little pop statements, especially an unexpected baby-blue poodle sculpture in a vitrine. Pay attention: Through November 17, concurrent with his Station Museum solo, is Unix star Eugenio Merino, who crafts hyper-real sculptures of dictators then places them in the deep freeze. Unix Gallery, 4411 Montrose Blvd., 713.874.1770, MILANESE MOVES AT 4411 MONTROSE A rtist/gallerist Wayne Gilbert might be the most colorful character on the Houston art scene. The Heights denizen can often be found hopping a plane to an international art show he and Gus Kopriva have co- curated. The duo has tirelessly carved out art turf along the 11th Street corridor at Ortman Place, blocks from Heights Boulevard. When landlord Kopriva of Redbud Gallery needed more space, Gilbert spied a nearby building sited in a residential area a short stroll from the current G Gallery (which will remain open through December; on view through November 4, a sculpture show based on the Surrealist parlor game the Exquisite Corpse, complete with viewer participation). Voilà — the G Spot was born. The clean, well- lighted one-room space debuted last month with new work by Angelbert Metoyer. Through November 4 at the G Spot, catalytic Tommy Gregory curates a group view titled "Fluffy or Soft Versus Flat or Rigid." Opening Saturday, November 7, are Rice Gallery-exhibited Jane Miller at G Gallery, Phillip Kremer of the faceless portraits at G Spot, the latter curated by Hello Project's Jon Hopson. G Spot Gallery, 310 E. 9th, 713.869.4770, G GALLERY, PART TWO O ne of our fave discoveries is artist Chasity Porter's year in-the-making rolling art gallery, Dormalou Project. Named for a pair of familial femmes, the mobile art van literally transports a cache of Houston notables, joined by some under-known talents, to schools, kids' birthday parties, art openings, foodie destinations such as Chocolate Wasted Ice Cream, the farmers market at Imperial Sugar Land and more. Gallery walls are the interior of a '97 Ford Econoline bus that this mom of two transformed to showcase the work of art-world pals, while espousing the mission of taking paintings, sculpture and drawings to new audiences. The show we caught, "The Magical, Mystical, Fantastical Dream Catcher," nodded to the kaleidoscopic '70s, complete with dream catcher wall sculptures. Best finds: a grisaille painting of cupcakes by Thedra Cullar- Ledford ($100) and an edgy drawing of a crying nymph by floral designer turned artist Gail Terrill ($50). Dormalou Project, 713.582.0525, DO YOU DORMALOU? Earl Staley's Gorge, 2015, at Zoya Tommy Gallery Zoya Tommy in her eponymous space pre-build-out Jonathan Casella's Sugar Tears, 2015, at Scott Charmin Gallery David Solomon, Alex Cesaria at Unix Gallery with a Justin Bower canvas Get on the Dormalou Project bus. Chasity Porter Detail of Gilbert's Rights of Spring, 2014 Wayne Gilbert at the G Spot

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