A R T L E T T E R
The Timely Magazine of Art
|#18||<!>previous/ next>!> Artletter index||December 1, 1995|
Kelli Scott Kelley at Lanning Gallery 12/24 Small panels, each one with rounded edges and nicely painted in turquoise, purple, and deep blue depict scenes of motherhood and togetherness. They seem to have been prepared as a pastime, in sufficient numbers to adorn the gallery walls. The rendering of the figures is terrible, but if it were really a pastime there would be no harm done.-Delfina Michael Miller at Inman Gallery 12/16 Each of the smaller (24x24") paintings is crowded with fruity clusters, checks, stripes, and stencils which seem close to bursting out. Riotous hot reds predominate, gaudy and crass like carnival sideshow posters. But there is a lack of commitment to the ever-repeated subjects: does Miller really love piles of stones and trees of orbs? Most of the concerns here, layering of technique, repetition of forms, are art concerns. Does the rest of the world care? Visually outstanding.-B.D. and Delfina Terell James at Hiram Butler 11/31 Poetic gestural abstractions (can you believe it!). Tough, energetic drawing articulates a bleached atmosphere. These works are plantlike, figurative and scratchy by turns. The two more colorful paintings are weaker. James is at her best when delicate color is subordinated to drawing.-B.D. Suzanne McClelland at Texas Gallery 12/16 This show is centered on three tangled paintings. Jungles of black charcoal lines are made up of illegible words and strings of meaningless numbers, gelatinous nodules of acrylic medium are awash in dirty pink and white rivers of pastel paint, and kindergarten clay turds and letters are smushed into a surface. The whole lot is self-consciously labeled "perfect", either hopefully or ironically, or both.-B.D. Visions of Love and Life: Pre-Raphaelite Art at the MFAH 1/2 The over-the-top romantic subjects of these works make lovely posters. The surprise here is the technical wretchedness of Rossetti's paintings: Proserpine 's skin is purplish gray, her neck a distended fish belly, her hair a red helmet that dropped in from another painting, and her fingers deflated balloons. Plus, the brushwork is clumsy and inconclusive. Yeech! Check out the painting of cherubic choir boys lit up by the blazing pink sky.-Delfina Address letters to: Bill Davenport, 801 Tulane St., Houston TX 77007 Mail subscriptions $25/year. Look for Artletter 19 on December 15.