It’s always a pleasure to witness the work of an artist who, by sheer originality and talent, has developed an iconography and stylistic vocabulary that is at once familiar and completely foreign. Familiar and foreign are not, as many might think, contradictory. Roy Dowell understands the dissonant interdependence of classic modernism and inventive, rule bending [...]
Author: Mario M. Muller
With 27 years as an Artist, Educator and Curator under my belt, I know what I like and why I like it.
I hold a degree in Filmmaking and Fine Art from Northwestern University where my primary mentor was Ed Paschke. I’ve also been fortunate enough to have master classes with Roy Lichtenstein, Wayne Thiebaud, Esteban Vincente, and Elaine de Kooning.
A born and bred New Yorker, I live and work in Los Angeles with my wife and four year old son.
As a writer of cultural criticism, my primary subjects have been Painting, Photography and Film. My film reviews appeared regularly in several Mid-western publications in the 1990’s while my art criticism has been exclusively published in New York and Los Angeles.
Dovetailing neatly with my critical interests, I have curated numerous exhibitions for corporate, gallery and non-for-profit venues. Essays have accompanied most of these shows.
And as an educator I have taught as a guest lecturer at the School for Visual Arts, International Center for Photography and the 92nd Street Y, all in NYC.
Painting continues to be relevant. If one has any doubt on this subject one need only witness the strong and mysterious paintings by Leon Benn currently on exhibit at Carter & Citizen in Culver City through October 12th, 2013. There are a multitude of qualities on exhibit. Three elements that Benn has firmly in his [...]
While the Fine Art Landscape is really more of a 365 days a year affair, September still feels like a renewal of promise. Perhaps our affection for the academic calendar is in our aesthetic DNA. Perhaps cooling tempertures index a return to culture. Regardless of catalytic source, here are five excellent exhibitions which will grace [...]
The California-Pacific Triennial opened a couple of weeks ago at The Orange County Museum of Art. The ambitious exhibition, which runs through November 17th, is the debut of a new format that used to be the California Biennial and has morphed to include 15 artists from countries that border the Pacific Ocean. The premise that [...]
I’m a sucker for sidebars. Small boxes filled with tantalizing stats about a certain topic, augmented by a pie chart or per cent breakdown lure my eye away from a substantive narrative article almost every time. Now imagine an exhibition based on the sidebar concept and you have an approximation of Windshield Perspective currently on [...]
The line between illustration and fine art becomes blurry sometimes. When this happens, both categories can benefit. The specificity and narrative potential of illustration’s paradigm can infuse fine art with a matter-of-factness so often missing. Conversely, fine art’s pretension can lend resonance to illustration’s cul de sac pleasures. This “both/and” synthesis is in ample evidence [...]
The pleasures of trompe l’oeil effects are immediate. However the gee whiz marvel over the technical ability to optically deceive fades fast like the precipitous drop in earnings of a wide release film in its second weekend receipts. In a new exhibition at Ambach and Rice, Ron van der Ende races headlong towards this cliff [...]
Matthias Merkel Hess demonstrates an impressive power of aesthetic transformation with a contemplative and intelligent solo exhibition at Acme Gallery on Wilshire Boulevard. One of the foremost principles of art is an act of transformation. This can be as basic as observing the three-dimensional object and rendering it in two dimensions. Of course it can [...]
The Santa Monica Museum of Art throws a great party. Every year, around this time there’s a party that’s thrown called Incognito. Should the name conjure images of revelers with bars across their eyes or entire heads pixelated beyond recognition, you might be a little off in your expectations. Incognito is an annual fundraiser for [...]
The power of photography, in its infancy, was often associated with magic. To capture the likeness of animate or inanimate objects with chemicals is of course a sort of alchemy. But along with democratic availability of the technology came not only a ubiquity but also a disillusion of magic. Rinko Kawauchi is one of the [...]