German painter Gerard Richter has dominated world painting for half a century, from his beginnings in Pop to riveting-if-fuzzy images drawn from daily newspaper photos, then large abstracts shaped primarily with squeegees, and on to more radical experiments. Though we may not know its actual source, we all […]
Geoff Wichert has degrees in critical writing and creative nonfiction. He writes about art to settle the arguments going on in his head.
Any exhibit of more than one artist has something in common with a double bill at the movie theater, including an implicit invitation to speculate about why these artists, or their gallery, chose to show these particular works together. In the case of Claire Wilson and Zack Pontious, […]
A bee at work in the cherry blossoms Gravity Hill, by Maximilian Werner For an essayist and fishing enthusiast, popular University of Utah writing professor Maximilian Werner didn’t do too badly with Crooked Creek, his first novel. Nominated for the Utah Book Award, it went up against In […]
Glass is the most contentious medium in art, and has been so since mid-way through the 20th century. Before that there were just as many arguments among glass artists and their audience, but they were tempests in so many blown glass teapots. What happened to change all that […]
Individual works in Bierstadt to Warhol: American Indians in the West at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA) may include western scenery, desert skies, colorful iconography, ethnic clothing and possessions, horses, and assorted mythic activities, alone or in various combinations. Some contain none of these. But the one […]
During the twentieth century, someone was always looking around and calling what he saw “the death of art.” Yet those years saw the creation of more original and innovative ways of art-making than in any other comparable era. Following the lead of painting, most of those newer […]
Geoff Wichert takes a look at artists using humor in their work, at Finch Lane and Art Access.
The theme of Friday evening’s festivities at King’s English was “The Earth Is Not Flat,” from the title of Katherine Coles’ fifth volume of poetry, just published and eagerly anticipated by followers of Utah’s leading poet. If that title sounds more like it belongs on a scientific treatise […]
Artworks can make visible the success of their makers, but to understand the struggles that produced them, and so the triumph they represented, something more is needed. Paul Cézanne was an artist who mastered his chops long before he was accepted by the gatekeepers, and the stories of […]
I like to emphasize the contrast between a first glance appearance of the strangely beautiful image and my fascination with them and the harsh consequences of the disasters depicted in them. —Lenka Konopasek The first Lenka Konopasek I remember encountering was among the most unforgettable works of […]
photos by Simon Blundell The Contemporary art world advertises itself as suspicious of beauty, which it rejects as a goal or even a strategy. Sometimes, though, it feels as though not just beauty, but any natural pleasure is on their taboo list. Political or sociological statements, the […]
Within the matte and frame lies an almost blank, gray rectangle. Recognizing the one contrasting spot—a foot, toes downward, entering at the top-left corner—causes this undifferentiated area to pop into focus: a reach of asphalt or concrete stretching away from the camera, into which open space a woman […]