Thursday, November 12, 2009

Introducing ArtHaus

Yesterday I posted about the Millennium Towers and all its beautifully decorated rooms on the 52nd Floor. Just after I had posted, as luck would have it, James Bacci contacted me saying that it was ArtHaus who presented the Millennium Towers with "Urban Elegance", an installation of paintings, sculpture and functional art in the Grand Hall. James Bacchi and Annette Schutz’s choice to pair painters Carolyn Meyer and Serena Bocchino is exquisite. While quite different in regard to subject matter and style, these painters share a gift to translate site, sound and energy to canvas. Their works offer the very best of everything that speaks urban.

Carolyn Meyer is an accomplished Bay Area artist. Her interpretations of the streets of San Francisco and New York City nod back to the Ashcan school of painting and to the tonalists who emerged during the Depression. Her toothsome paint application reveals her commitment to combining traditional techniques with modern subject matter. While she is not concerned with realism, Meyer not only captures the emotional rush of these great cities, but appears to hold them for ransom.

Carolyn Meyer, Portrait of Physics, 60”x60”, oil on canvas

When it comes to describing Serena Bocchino’s jazz inspired abstract paintings, art critic John Eischeid doesn’t skip a beat; "Imagine waking up one Saturday morning to find Jackson Pollock and Miles Davis sitting in the living room, watching cartoons and chatting about their relationships with others, their relationship with God and the genesis of the universe. Such is the work of New York artist Serena Bocchino: Eclectic, imaginative, insightful and unique.

Serena Bocchino, Even the Rocks Will Cry Out, 46”x52”,
oil and poured enamel on canvas

She draws on feelings evoked by music, responding to sound in paint and inviting her audience to respond to her work in turn. The result is an audible yet visible art, in which swaths of color form backgrounds like bass tones and harmonies, punctuated by the dots of rhythmic cymbal crashes and laced with meandering melodies of dripped color". Bocchino adds, “I made art as most children do. The difference is that I just kept doing it.”

A singular bronze sculpture, titled Fourteen Words by John Christensen is postured atop a most extraordinary table from the William Switzer Collection. Christensen’s works are physical – first felt, later thought – that claim their own place, that breathe, that have a specific stance.

The placement of Fourteen Words on the Irish George II Curraghmore Table is alluring. A chartreuse lacquered wood top is juxtaposed with an elaborately hand-carved pine base with a graphite driftwood finish.

ArtHaus’ "Urban Elegance" at "Icons of Design" is just that. Bacchi and Schutz’s narrative, utilizing fine art as a sole design element, beautifully translates the visual language of sky high living amidst the greatness of San Francisco.

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On another note, you might also be interested in ArtHaus' current exhibition “the FINE ART OF DESIGNers”. This show features fine art and photography by some of the Bay Area’s most noteworthy interior designers. More than 100 guests from the art and interior design communities celebrated the opening of the exhibition on November 5th and 10% of all sales will benefit "Philanthrophy By Design". Here's a sneak peak:

Frank Van Duerm/Van Duerm Design Associates, Untitled, 16”x20”, photograph

Steve Henry painting

“the FINE ART OF DESIGNers" continues through December 23, 2009.
ArtHaus is located at 411 Brannan Street, between 3rd and 4th Streets.
Gallery hours are Tuesday – Friday, 11am-6pm and Saturday, noon-5pm.
For further information phone 415-977-0223

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