Discontinuity Continuum

New Works by Pam Longobardi and Craig Dongoski
February 23-March 30, 2013

Opening Reception: March 2nd, 6-9 pm

eg. a fracture in rocks marking a change in physical or chemical properties; a property of a mathematical function and of tree structures in theoretical linguistics; a conception of history as espoused by the philosopher Michel Foucault; a break in continuity.

For the first time in over a decade, Pam Longobardi and Craig Dongoski will exhibit their studio works together. Longobardi shows new work in paintings on copper, collage-cyanotype works on paper.  The paintings create self-contained universes where Longobardi visualizes a future point where unprecedented changes wrought by humans may be clearly read through the paintings' materiality.  She uses a combination of naturally occurring materials (copper and chemical patinas) and industrially created materials  (plastics, acrylic and lacquers) that are mixed to create that cracks, craters and stratigraphic layers on the copper panel.  These works reveal large, connected energy systems punctuated by the minutia of a microscopic lens, continuing her investigation of the problematic psychological relationship between humans and the natural world while simultaneously suggesting an interconnected fate. Longobardi utilizes the genre of landscape painting to suggest future worlds that parallel our own, often depicting colonization and escape.  Suggestions of buildings, factories and cities are minimized and fossilized in a future geologic layer.  Miniature and sometimes solitary human figuration exists in caves and on isolated promontories.  The forces of nature are wrought physically on the surfaces of these works as she cultivates phenomenological events to occur.  While these paintings depict disruption and cataclysm, they also function as record and warning of untold changes we are now experiencing in the physical world.  While Longobardi's Drifters Project functions in the world of the real, these paintings explore the imaginary and near-real and envision a lessened human footprint and nature as an ultimately powerful and enduring presence.

Craig Dongoski presents a body of work that employs drawing-sound experiments and innovations in tandem with chimpanzees through the Language Research Center in Atlanta. He has been exploring and articulating the mark in its most basic form as a vehicle for communicative expression for much of his career. Working with a particular chimpanzee named Panzee in a year long interaction has instigated a wide field of new possibilities to expand the scope of research. Panzee spontaneously developed her own mark-making habit early in her life, but it has not been considered in any serious capacity. The significance of the marks to Panzee is as yet unknown; but there is an overall shape, aesthetic deliberateness and intention, and evidence of visual concentration. The marks are evenly spaced and carefully placed along very tightly spaced lines. Panzee's marks are seated in the solid artistic realms of ancient writing, calligraphy and gestural abstraction. Art demonstrates its most radical shifts when there is a rupture in mark making, such as Van Gogh, Pollock, Michaux, Rainer.  Utilizing his signature linear style, Dongoski's work with Panzee is involved with the potential of innate expression within human artistic practice and present provocative statements both philosophically and artistically within this context. Through varied interpretations of the marks, a contribution is made to the art historical dialogue within the origin of human expression.

In the Kress Lobby Gallery: Kimber Berry's Liquid Landscapes

American abstractionist Kimber Berry has captured the attention of the global art community over the past decade with her explosively colorful, visually dense, multi-dimensional canvases and installations. Often done on industrial materials, she masterfully and gleefully integrates elements of the digital and pure paint. She creates a symphonic dance between the virtual world and the organic universe and challenges the viewer to discern between them.  

Berry's universe is an ultra-world that exists within and without the time/space continuum. In one moment the viewer is taken beneath the ocean's surface into a kaleidoscopic world of color and form suggesting coral reefs. In the next instant we are taken outside of the earth's atmosphere and even into other dimensions - and back - at the speed of our perception. Kimber Berry's world is consummately informed by her childhood. 

Originally from Los Angeles, Berry grew up surrounded by over-the-top advertising and the glitz of Hollywood. This background was the genesis that fueled her desire to explore the psychological experience of living in an over-stimulated society, constantly bombarded by media noise. Her installations and paintings interlace, overlap and converge upon themselves in much the same manner of existing in multiple environments at once. The fluidity of paint and the brush stroke act as narrative tools to recreate the psychological compression of stimuli found in our society.  

Berry creates simulated environments in which the observer can psychologically step within, creating an experience that engages the viewer on a deeper level. Moving beyond the rigid boundaries of painting distinctly within the edge of a canvas, Berry provides a fluid existence that allows her art to melt into, embed, connect, and disconnect, through the aspiration to fully engage a wall- essentially, becoming part of the space. Her paintings and installations exist in the psychological space between object and life, reality and illusion.