Sunday, June 11, 2017

"Hybrid Form" at Thatcher Projects

When you're an exhibiting artist with a blog, you have to be careful to not go overboard with the me, me, me. But I'm in a group show, Hybrid Form, at Margaret Thatcher Projects in Chelsea with six other artists (up through July 21), so there's plenty of room for all of us in this post. Consider it not a review or even a report but simply a walk-through. The artists are Frank Badur, Omar Chacon, Freddy Chandra, Kevin Finklea, Ted Larsen, Richard Roth, and myself.

The press release describes the show as challenging the strictures of what constitutes a painting, reading in part: “This stretching of the definition of painting follows the tradition of earlier artists such as Rauschenberg who focused on pushing the boundaries of essentialism in art, bridging the gulf between painting, subject, and object.”

Panorama of the front gallery at Margaret Thatcher Projects. Looking in from the entrance, from left: Two by Richard Roth, Frank Badur, Roth, Badur; right wall: Freddy Chandra, Kevin Finklea, Ted Larsen

I want to be careful to not impose my opinions on this show, but I will offer some quick observations: The objectness of these works is very much in evidence, particularly expressed in the way sides and edges are treated, and there is attention to how the artists have put their work together. There's nothing provisional here; everything is crafted by artists who have spent years honing their skills in the studio. Materiality is evident as well. We work not only in oil but in acrylic, wax, resin, wood, and salvaged metal. Color is saturated, sometimes quirky.  OK, let’s look.

From left as you enter the gallery: Roth, Roth, Badur, Roth

Richard Roth
Above: Speed Bump 2, 2016m acrylic on birch panel

Below: Still Hell-Bent

Continuing clockwise around the gallery: Roth bracketed by Badur

Frank Badur, Untitled (Yellow), 1994, oil and alkyd on linen
Gallery photo

Richard Roth, Mambo Italiano, 2017, acrylic on birch panel

Frank Badur, Untitled (Red), 1994, oil and alkyd on linen
Gallery photo

Corner detail below 

 Freddy Chandra, Thicket, 2016, acrylic and resin on canvas; Kevin Finklea

Thicket detail below

Kevin Finklea, Hunter #1, 2017, acrylic on canvas (top) and acrylic on poplar- and birch-veneer plywood

Detail below

Ted Larsen

 View from the hallway looking into the front gallery
Left: Ted Larsen; in distance: Chandra, Finklea, Larsen

Ted Larsen, New Routine, 2016; salvage steel, hardware, welded steel, chemicals

 Pivoting in the hallway to look toward the back gallery
Larsen on either side of the support beam; Chandra

 Freddy Chandra, Boreal, 2016, acrylic and resin on cast acrylic; Ted Larsen, Extra Ordinary, 2017; salvage steel, hardware, welded steel, chemicals

 From the hallway looking into the Project Room
Foreground: Kevin Finklea, Key #1, 2017, acrylic on laminated poplar- and birch-veneer plywood
In the gallery: nine new paintings from Silk Road, my ongoing series

In the Project Room
From left: Larsen, Finklea, Mattera, Chacon

Ted Larsen, Passive Challenge, 2017, salvaged steel on reclaimed cardboard
Gallery photo

Kevin Finklea
Above and below: two views of Dominion 1, 2013
Gallery photos

Joanne Mattera, installation view of Silk Road, 2017, encaustic on panel

Silk Road 360
Silk Road 361

Omar Chacon, Le Jaune Mesalina, 2017, acrylic on canvas

Side detail below 


  1. What a beautiful show!
    Thanks, Joanne.

  2. Thank you for this walk through! Gorgeous color filled show! Congrats Joanne!!!

  3. Incredible exhibition Joanne!! I love the angle you've shown your Silk Road pieces on and I'm really drawn to the Frank Badur, Untitled (Red) painting.
    cheers, ian