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Galleries Call the Shots for 'Exhibition 2003'

By Stephanie Geerlings


he gallery at Library Square is hosting "Exhibition 2003," an eclectic showcase of several local galleries. The show is put on by the Utah Arts Festival and the Salt Lake Gallery Association in hopes to jump start your art awareness before the upcoming festival.

The show exposes some of the best work of the year displayed in Utah. It has been up since June 1 and will go until July 5. Carolyn Dickinson, manager of level four of the downtown library where the gallery is located, said, "I hope people go see the show. Once on level four, the gallery is hard to miss."

The work was selected by 31 participating galleries. Instead of having a style-biased juror for one gallery show, there are many style-biased galleries displaying art that helps the patron understand what kind of art the gallery is typically interested in. The outcome is a multi-dimensional attraction.

    Dude, that's like a real bird that they just shellacked onto the canvas. A real, dead bird. It's not pining.

Galleries that picked only one artist to represent them shirked responsibility. TRASA Urban Arts Collective, known for their daring assorted underground artists, chose Ben Duke. Duke’s works are professional, attractive and read on many levels, but by no means exemplify TRASA’s wide scope.

Locally renown Phillip’s Gallery chose all non representational abstracts to define them. Among them is Dennis Phillip’s own work “The Garden of Delight.” The gallery’s selected works are some of the exhibit’s most impressively large-scale pieces. Lee Deffenbach and Tony Smith are the other representatives from the gallery’s collection.

David Ericksen Fine Art also makes a loud creative rumble with a piece entitled “The Rescue” by Brian Kershisnik. It portrays a young girl hitting a bear with a shovel, blood and all, as the bear chews at the smoache of the attacked boy. All of the figures are stylized, flat and show no expression of the trauma in which they are involved.

Art Space Forum does the most outstanding job in showing a variety of contemporary and marvelous artists’ works. “Josh,” a portrait by Jennifer Sulfita, is perhaps the most mild. Mike Bernard’s piece “Indelible Horizon” shows his interest in language and theory. A varnished dead bird, bones exposed, hovers over a wire stretched across the balanced canvas. Below reads “anxious chest of meadows fluttering over the indelible horizon.”

Even more mixed media than this can be found in Shawn Harris’ “Uilee’s Journal,” which displays a photograph of a man with a stamp placed where his heart was cut out. The same image comes out half-finished from the typewriter built into the picture. Our art is our inner stamp. It is ourselves that we create and recreate.

The interior designer’s wet dreams come true thanks to A Gallery. The two pieces from the gallery could hang in almost any room. “Tea Arrived” by Bradford Overton is toned in luscious browns and hangs classically, creating its own space and reverence.

For those of you who love landscapes, you’ll notice that Magpie, South and William's Fine Art galleries have chosen from their repertoires.

The Salt Lake Gallery Association was formed in 1983. Its leaders are responsible for curating and hanging the exhibit. They work to bring local artists well deserved recognition through collaboration with local businesses, civic groups and non-profit organizations. They are responsible for the monthly gallery stroll, which keeps galleries open later to make a night out of visual arts. They urge the patrons of “Exhibition 2003” to “leave with a reflective mind, a capacity for deeper inquiry as well as a heightened understanding of others and their ideas.”

This exhibit will remind you how excited you are for the Utah Arts Festival, and while wading through this diverse ecosystem, you are bound to see something you’ll love.