3778 30th Street, North Park
“Fast Forward,” a new group art show at North Park’s Low Gallery, opens Friday the 13th with an artists reception from 6-10 p.m. Following that, the show will remain on display through January 14, 2014.
The show features work from over forty artists, all of whom either specialize in smaller work, or created scaled-down pieces that still represent their unique styles. There’s a practical logic at work, because Low Gallery is a small space, but the pint-sized paintings, photographs, sculptures, and other work on display also serve to break down the barrier to entry for would-be collectors who lack the spatial or financial resources to purchase larger artworks.
Explaining that aspect of the show, curator Meegan Nolan says, “A lot of people had to make small pieces exclusively for this show. It’s about trying to get people to start collecting art, and just putting interesting things in front of their eyes. I’m trying to make the selection very interesting. There are some artists that are very established, there are people who are younger and there are people who have been making art for forty years or more. I chose everyone because I felt like they were visionaries in some form or another.
“I want art to be accessible to people, not out of reach.”
Of course, there’s a distinct artistic quality to smaller works. Nolan says:
“Every time I see [photographer Lawrence Freeman’s] work, I want it to be larger. He works in triptychs and, for this show, I was having a conversation with him about thinking of his work as ‘microscope size.’ It’s interesting what scale can do.”
“Max Kauffman, one of my favorite artists, is in the show,” says Nolan. “His paintings create a private landscape, his own world. He describes it as a post-apocalyptic DIY culture where you have to make things out of what’s left. It’s very beautiful and very tragic, but there’s something magical and otherworldly about them.”
Other artists displaying at the show include Eric Wixon, PJ Fidler, Matty Davis, and James Watts (who sculpts with whimsy and folklore on the mind, and makes no claims of having invented the steam engine).