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Defender Picks


Art Openings and Shows in NOLA

Each week, NoDef brings you a comprehensive directory of visual arts
in the Crescent City from Julia to St. Claude

April 3-10

by Cheryl Castjohn

The Arts District gears up for “Jammin on Julia” this Saturday beginning around sixish with live music, libations and a whole lot of great art.  Shows opening include Abe Geasland at Ariodante, Joli Livaudais at Martine Chaisson, and Nall at Octavia.  Bunny Matthews parties at Arthur Roger for his “People A to Z” show.  The Contemporary Arts Center opens “Hello I Am,” selections from an open call inspired by the “30 Americans” show.  The art featured is in “Hello” is all by New Orleans area teenagers.  Jam out with Jammin on Julia, catch Lee Deigaard’s “Trespass” on its final weekend, and catch Brod Bagert at NOMA on Friday Night.  Happy Jammin’, Art Defenders!


“Into the Light II” opens Thursday night at the Ogden amidst the musical stylings of songwriter and musician Jim McCormick and songstress Kristin Diable.  The Bywater’s Alvar Library opens an expedition of Cynthia Scott’s socially-conscious and environmentally astute works as a part of its ongoing Alvar Arts Series.  Jonathan Ferrara Gallery continues its open call for entries into its annual “No Dead Artists” competition, and  MFA Candidates Valerie Corradetti and David Hassel, Jr. continue to hold court at UNO St. Claude.




Ariodante Gallery, 535 Julia Street

Furniture and curious objects by Abe Geasland introduce New Orleanians to the post-industrial primitive style of this master maker.  A real highlight of Jammin on Julia.  Alix Travis’ breezy watercolors depict leisurely life amidst New Orleans architecture, and sumptuous subtropical scenes.  The fine, original jewelry artistry of Jivita Harris Casey explores abstracted as well as realistic natural shapes with inspired precision.  The highly stylized handmade furniture of Craig Taylor that you will just hate to obscure with everyday objects round out an abundant month of April at Ariodante.



Arthur Roger Gallery, 432 & 434 Julia Street

Arthur Roger celebrates openings with “New Orleans A to Z” by Bunny Matthews and Edward Whiteman’s “Swinging Pendulum” in conjunction with Jammin on Julia.


Boyd Satellite, 440 Julia Street

Gallery talk with celebrated Pop artist Derek Boshier at 2pm, followed by an opening reception to coincide with Jammin’ on Julia this Saturday the 5th.  Boshier is an artist with a 50-plus year career who is considered a part of Pop Art’s founding history.  Featured in Ken Russell’s documentary “Pop Goes the Easel.”


Callan Contemporary, 518 Julia Street

Adrian Deckbar, “Transformations”  These staggeringly lifelike paintings utilize broad, horizontally oriented canvases to envelop the viewer in cycles of life.  Vignettes of pond life stay oh-so-true to the palettes of wild and placid ponds.  A must-see for serious shoppers, meant to be ooh’ed and ahh’ed over in an inviting architectural setting.


Jonathan Ferrara Gallery, 400 Julia Street

Mel Chin’s “More Greatest Hits” features works like “Impotent Victory” and QWERTY Courbet whose materiality leaves no realm of common object untouched.  From AK-47’s to high-tops to blasting powder, their flammability is ironically not what makes this show so explosive.  Trough April 12th.


LeMieux Gallery, 332 Julia Street

Benjamin Shamback’s “Color is a Vessel” continues through April 19th which features lush flora on copper plates in the 16th and 17th century traditional style.


Martine Chaisson Gallery, 727 Camp Street

Joli Livaudais’ “Dreams and Replies” comes to Chaisson Gallery for the month of April with a wildly mixed media show of resins, light, innovative photographic incorporations and stunning hand-craft.  See how it all comes together at her opening this Saturday the 5th from 6pm to 9pm.


Octavia Gallery, 454 Julia Street

Octavia Gallery affords us the opportunity to check in on the multi-media works of distinguished artist Nall.  A student at L’Ecole de Beaux Arts during the 1970’s and a student of Salvador Dali, this Alabama artist’s pedigree promises a new and exciting show. Reception Saturday from 6pm to 8pm.


Soren Christensen, 400 Julia Street

A collection of Eric Abrecht’s cheerful, lovely, atmospheric oils on canvas whisper of JMW Turner’s love of weather in its more sanguine moods.


Stella Jones Gallery, 201 St. Charles (enter on Gravier)

“20th Century Works on Paper by Artist of the Diaspora continues.


TEN Gallery, 4432 Magazine Street

“Illustrations for Stories that Haven’t Been Written” by Harriet Burbeck explores the relationship between image and narrative in this surreally misleading collection of black and white drawings.  Part of the exhibit involves viewer authorship of the drawings, which will be posted on Burbeck’s “Stories” site.  A fun cooperation between an artist and her public promises to be entertaining, so throw in your narrative and join Burbeck’s beautifully twisted adventure.


CAC, 900 Camp Street

“Hello, I Am”  is a peer-curated exhibition of contemporary artworks by New Orleans area teenagers. Developed by the CAC’s Teen Board, the show is comprised of art inspired by the “30 Americans” show of work selected from an open call.  Opening reception Saturday from 6pm to 8pm.


“30 Americans” showcases works by many of the most important African American artists of the last three decades. This provocative exhibition focuses on issues of racial, sexual, and historical identity in contemporary culture while exploring the powerful influence of artistic legacy and community across generations.  “30 Americans” involves all three floors and a one-time-only collection of prominent and important black artists.  Through June 13



NOMA, One Collins Diboll Circle, City Park

Friday Nights at NOMA

April 5th, 5pm to 9pm

Keith Burnstein and Michael Skinkus entertain between 5:30 and 8:30 pm

Local author, personality and language scholar Brod Bagert reads and signs books


Mel Chin’s “Rematch” continues on the first floor.  This legendary Chinese American Southern artist’s most important and best loved works remain on display.  A video game, a deconstructed encyclopedia, a creative and massive attempt to clean up New Orleans lead-contaminated soil, and so very much more await you at NOMA through May.  “Rematch” is a great family-geared show, fun and thought-provoking for all ages.


“Photography and the American Civil War” traveling exhibit organized by Met Curator Jeff Rosenheim features rare and newly discovered photography and objects which tell the story of photography’s intimately intertwined relationship with the War Between the States.  Innovations on the stereograph incorporate some shockingly modern technology into the mix in this one-of-a-kind, one-of-a-lifetime exhibit.


Camille Henrot’s “Cities of Ys” continues.  A multi-media exhibition wrapping up on April 13th.


Ongoing at the Ogden Museum of Contemporary Southern Art

Ogden After Hours

March 20th

Celebrate the first day of spring with songwriter Jim McCormick performs with singer Kristin Diable for a southern-crafted mini-show

Opening Reception - “Into the Light II: Photographs from the Permanent Collection of the Ogden Museum of Southern Art”

Housing “one of the most important and comprehensive collections of Southern photography in the U.S.” Ogden’s second phase of this unique exhibition highlights rare and previously-unseen photographs from its holdings. More work culled from the ouvres of Shelby Lee Adams, William Christenberry, George Dureau, William Eggleston, Birney Imes, Roland L. Freeman, Marion Post Wolcott, and many others.


“Trespass,” Lee Deigaard  Photography, video installation taken from her “Unbidden” and “Pulse,” series, respectively.  Trespass is part of Deigaard’s ongoing exploration into the complex relationship between humans and nature.  Final weekend!


 “I’ll Save You Tomorrow” Juan Logan’s multi-media collection continues on the fourth floor, with installations, paintings, collages and sculpture.



“Rediscovered,” Steffen Thomas  A Stone Mountain, Georgia artist who left his native Nuremburg in 1928 to earn acclaim as a Southern American artist.  This is the final weekend to see selections of his works.


Walter Inglis Anderson: Selections from the Permanent Collection of the Ogden Museum of Southern Art

Southern Regionalists: Selections from the Permanent Collection of the Ogden Museum of Southern Art


Andrews-Humphrey Gallery: George “The Dot Man ”Andrews (1911-1996) was a self-taught artist from Plainview, Georgia. The exhibit also includes his son, the late Benny, who was a civil rights activist and proponent for change in the art world, where he faced discrimination as a multiracial artist. Nene Humphrey is a sculpture, drawer, and printmaker whose work draws from her Roman Catholic background.

Thornton Dial’s “Struggling Tiger in Hard Times”

Will Henry Stevens Gallery: A pioneer of southern modernism, Stevens organizes the landscapes around him in clean shapes and colors


The Historic New Orleans Collection, 533 Royal Street

“In Liberty’s Name” book signing with Eva Augustin Rumpf

Saturday, April 5th from 2pm to 4pm


Jacob Haight and Mary Meek Morrison Memorial Lecture

Sunday, April 6th beginning at 4pm


Shout, Sister, Shout!  The Boswell Sisters of New Orleans

Opening Reception Tuesday, March 25, 6:30pm to 8pm
with a performance by new vaudeville review team Jones and Boyce
Free and open to the public
Members are invited to preview the exhibition from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m


In the 1920s and ’30s, a trio of sisters from New Orleans became the darlings of radio’s golden age. Martha, Connie, and Vet Boswell were classically trained musicians heavily influenced by the city’s vibrant jazz scene. Together they pioneered the cheerful, close-harmony style that became emblematic of 1940s girl groups. Join The Historic New Orleans Collection in rediscovering the Boswell Sisters, one of the city’s most celebrated musical exports.


“Civil War Battlefields and National Parks” the photography of AJ Meeks final weekend, through Saturday the 5th.



Scale Model of 1915 French Quarter


In conjunction with HNOC’s 2007 exhibition Four Hundred Years of French Presence in Louisiana, the Minister of Culture and Communication of France presented a model of the French Quarter as it would have appeared in about 1915 to the people of New Orleans. Built in 1962 by French artists and jazz enthusiasts Pierre Atlan and Pierre Merlin, the large model depicts the look and character of the French Quarter when it was still a thriving residential area, as well as Storyville and the city’s rail lines. Although the original model covered the entire city, the only surviving portion is the French Quarter.


St. Claude


Barrister’s, 2331 St. Claude Avenue at Spain Street

Dan Tague curates “Thy Will Be Done” a show featuring works by Generic Art Solutions, Heathcliff Hailey, Charlie Hoffacker, Elizabeth Kleinweld, Epaul Julien and Michael Greathouse. 


Pop-Up show, Demetri Masiakos’s “Dekatria” features 13 creepy and beautiful precious objects fashioned of old photos set into cabinets and behind curtains.  A little Dr. Caligari, a little Joseph Cornell, a lot of questions.


Good Children Gallery, 4037 St. Claude Avenue

“HEIIR” Curated by Tameka Norris, co-curated by Ernest Littles and Breana Thompson


The Front, 4100 St. Claude Avenue

Rooms 1 & 2

Kyle Bravo’s “As It Was in the Beginning Is Now And Ever Shall Be”

Room 3

John Isiah, Carl Joe Williams, Ayo Scott, Keith Duncan, Bruce Davenport, Jr., 501V

“28 Days Later”

Room 4

Jamie Alonzo’s “Handle with Care”


“Her Shorts”


The May Space, 2839 North Robertson, Ste 105

Susan Bowers has “renewed her passion for the primordial medium” of ceramics and we all win.  “Triptix” at May Space.


Press Street’s Antenna, 3718 St. Claude Avenue

“Gimme that ol’tyme religion” by street artist MRSA consists of large, abstract cutouts of gods and monsters, woven together with folklore and artistic license.


Second Story Gallery at the Healing Center, 2372 St. Claude Avenue

Gina Laguna and Cynthia Ramirez take over the Second Story Gallery with steel sculpture by Laguna and mind-blowing, colorful work by Ramirez.


UNO St. Claude, 2429 St. Claude Avenue

Valeria Corradetti’s “Paper Mountains” features drawings and photographs in vivid colors and luscious textures.


David Hassel’s “AUTOREPAIR: Pulsed Plasma Stimulation” investigates branding and pleasurable consumer experience by packaging an unseemly latex product of his own making.


Listings by Cheryl Castjohn 


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