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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

May 22-29

Ponder the Fibonacci series amidst Amy Wesikopf’s virtuoso cabbages and nautili at Arthur Roger, “Fathom” the true depth of Ryn Wilson’s artistic acumen, feel the “Fiyah” with Darel Joseph and share a last dream with Joli Livudais.  “Rise Up” to the occasion of all this visual stimulation in the Crescent City this last breath of May.  Spring done got sprung by all this hot, hot art. 




Ariodante Gallery, 535 Julia Street

It is always a heady mix of art objects at Ariodante, and May carries on this standard with great ease.  See the colorscapes of Erin Lee Gafill, paintings by Julie Breaux, airtight hand-turned wood vessels of Paul Burk and jewelry by Eric Silva.  Burk’s hand-turned works of wonder fit together with airtight perfection, demonstrations of technical perfection.  Eric Silva’s eclectic accoutrements utilize classical design elements mixed with industrial and futuristic chic, not to mention a few great-looking garnets.  Treat yourself to a stroll around Ariodante.  Up through May 31st.  


Arthur Roger Gallery, 432 & 434 Julia Street

Amy Weiskopf’s “Still Lifes” continues to hang at Arthur Roger, generously through mid-July.  This is not an excuse to waste time waiting to see the work at the last minute.  Weiskopf’s quaint depictions of everyday veggies, seashells and creepy cookies are bursting at the seams with virtuoso displays and lesser-known comparisons.  Her purple onion is more fun at a party than most of your relatives, and probably smarter.  Get over there.


You may be quite familiar with Dale Chihuly’s perfect and overwhelming chandeliers, though no two are much alike.  Arthur Roger displays other types of work by the renowned glass sculptor that you may not know about.  ARG presents Chihuly’s abstractions in vases and drawings in flat glass, even a few gravity-defying swamp scenes of uncanny similarity to Louisiana landscapes.  The show is up through July 12th.


Boyd Satellite, 440 Julia Street

Boyd Satellite presents the eerily quiet paintings of Elizabeth Fox this month in her show “Played to Win.”  Silent backgrounds layered as flat as newspaper present characters from the viewer’s dreams which are indistinguishable from nightmares.  Fox’s innate ability to haunt with blue skies and terrify with blank expressions of “Businessmen in the Snow” is a wonder which beckons like a Pandora’s Box of fun and hopefully her special brand of trouble.  


Callan Contemporary, 518 Julia Street

“I Search in Snow” by Sibylle Peretti features slightly askew neo-classically-styled sculpture, etchings in innovative mediums and precious bells capturing fairy tale scenes.  Sensuously cast in milky or silvered or paper-coated glass, Peretti’s strange and enthralling methods demand investigation.  Jam your hands deep inside your pockets because you are going to want to touch them.


Jonathan Ferrara Gallery, 400 Julia Street

NOLA favorites Gina Phillips and Skylar Fein take us on magical mystery tours of isolated objects and arbitrary words out of context.  If you ever dreamed of being spirited away by the Cat in the Hat in real life, these concurrent exhibitions at Jonathan Ferrara are your very best shot in adulthood, artistically speaking.  Cake in the bathtub, Ms. Phillips?  Don’t mind if we do.


David Buckingham wows with witty, wacky onomatopoeia whose medium is inseparable from their messages, and metal notes to keep sacred.  Their concepts are as sharp as their edges so as Wolsey would have warned, “Be very, very careful what you put in your head because you will never, ever get it out!”  Buckingham cautions us to drink deep with tongue-in-cheek works like “The Gum Chewer’s Dilemma.”


LeMieux Gallery, 332 Julia Street

Artist and musician Jon Langford presents “Summer Stars,” a collection of beloved musical idols like Snooks Eaglin, Johnny and June, Lou Reed and Elvis.  The show’s centerpiece is a love letter to New Orleans’ music, with local legends like Big Chief Jolly, Blue Lu Baker and Allen Touissant set in the night sky, finally getting the respect they deserve.  Gather and get low to bow to the jazz heritage of this cosmically gifted city alongside the outsider-ish, folky altars of Mr. Jon Langford.  


Martine Chaisson Gallery, 727 Camp Street

Joli Livaudais’ “Dreams and Replies” continues through May 31st, providing 31 more grateful opportunities to taste every flavor this honey-covered jewel of an exhibit has to offer.  Art by a woman, for women, explores universal questions from a distinctly feminine standpoint and is expressly poised but not shy!  Wander amongst Livudais’ confounding creations.


Octavia Gallery, 454 Julia Street

Michael Varisco’s “Fluid States” pulls us out of our manic routines and into a state of suspended grace with his visually arresting photos of water life.  Whether he positions us just beneath the water’s surface or forces us past the water’s edge, Varisco is turning the sublime on its head, crystallizing it to its very core with his unique vantage point.  Let these seemingly tranquil photos plunge you into breathlessness.  Printed utilizing dye-sublimated silks at times and archival chromogenic print at others, this show only continues through May 31st.


TEN Gallery, 4432 Magazine Street

“Remembrance” featuring works by Roderick Worden opens Saturday at TEN.  Worden’s crisp, nighttime photography tingles with Eggleston-esque verve and crispness.  A feast for the eyes, hopefully replete with more Southern scenes like feature the game-show “PAWN” letters, “Remembrance” offers a dusky slice of Louisiana life. 

New works by Rex Dingler.


St. Claude

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

Shawn Hall presents “Subterraneous,” paintings and video, altered photographs, with video sound by Floy Krouchi


Pop-Up show, Adam Montegut’s “Transmographies,” goes a little JG Ballard on the Vitruvian man, pulling in color schemes from 70’s appliances.  Intriguing transformations play with stillness and motion in a manner not typically seen in painting.

Cave Installation, “Illuminated Vessels” by Marcela Singleton.


Byrdie’s, 2422 St. Claude Avenue

 “Berlanderi – in the Belize Delta” by Megan Singleton is “an installation of sculpture and pulp paintings… investigating native and invasive flora that clutch Louisiana between the fingers of their roots”  Known for her intrinsic investigations of plant life, Singleton takes us on a tour of what is beneath the surface.


Good Children Gallery, 4037 St. Claude Avenue

“Middle Digit” features sculptures by gallery member Aaron McNamee takes the much-feared salute to its three-dimensional limits with his bronzy study of a living ‘kiss my asterisk.’


The Front, 4100 St. Claude Avenue

Room 1

“Bahama Kangaroo Presents:  Yukako Ezoe and Naoki Onodera” 

Artist Yukako Ezoe explores art-making in an atmosphere of limited and limiting resources, using found materials rather than purchasing raw materials from an art store.

Naoki Onodera presents forms consisting of rhythmic, undulating lines which imitate a woodcut or silkscreen medium.


Room 2

The follow-up to October 2013’s first half of a collective exchange with Tokyo Art Lab, experience this interactive exhibit as it evolves through digital streaming live from Tokyo. 


Room 3

“Thirds” featuring the work of Lindsay Preston Zappas, Jamie Solock and Hunter Thompson promise a mixture unlike any we’re likely to see.  If Preston Zappas’s “Parrots and Cheetahs” is any indication of the show’s feel, Thirds promises some thrills.  Combine this aesthetic with the strange and wonderful projected video works of Jamie Solock and we find out why three is such a magic number.


Room 4

Another promising installment of video work by Ryn Wilson has arrived at The Front with “Fathom.”  This time, Wilson stages an enchanting, if slightly haunting (and haunted), ode to the experimental film of the 1970’s.  The artist guides us through shifting themes that were responding to feminism in the form of the female protagonist, and “Satanic Panic” from the religious right.  


The May Space, 2839 North Robertson, Ste 105

Lotte Geeven’s “VIGOR” is “a solo exhibition comprised of a video projection, a moving image and an immersive installation with a proprietary publication” which explores our relationship in this specific place, to the forces of matter, power and water.  Multi-media artist Geeven collaborated with Milo Daemgen and Alexander H Payne in conjunction with Greenhouse Collective to produce the video projection portion of the installation.


Press Street’s Antenna, 3718 St. Claude Avenue

“Com-ixing” continues a sample display of comics created in New Orleans beginning with “TURD” in the 1990’s, “dafa FUNGUS” in the 2000’s, “FUN FUN” in 2008 and culminating in “Feast yer Eyes,” “Ink Tank,” “Your Friends Make Comics” and “Not Your Mother’s Meatloaf.”  Original ink drawings for sale.


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

“Les Femme et Les Fleurs” in the alla prima method of painting wet over wet by Hilarie Couture


Staple Goods, 1340 St. Roch Avenue

“GRAPHite” by Robert Lansden consists of small, intricately drawn graphite on graph paper pieces that explore pattern within a narrowly defined square parameter.  The result is an intimate viewing experience, the love story between a boy and his Blackwing 602.


UNO St. Claude, 2429 St. Claude Avenue

Two Thesis Exhibitions continue at UNO St. Claude  


Corbin R. Wayne Covher’s “Material Lifespan” Covher seeks to heighten mundane materials such as concrete and foam through his intuitive, experimental, and evolving studio practice.


Darel Joseph’s “Redd Hott Fiyah." In this exhibition, Joseph explores performance through the lens of collage, a medium that she feels appropriately mirrors her diverse cultural heritage


CAC, 900 Camp Street

“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


“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.  


Mark Of The Feminine: Call For Submissions through June 11th

This is an open call inviting female artists and artists identifying as female who live and work, or regularly show work, in the Greater New Orleans area including Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard, Plaquemines and St. Tammany parishes to submit work


NOMA, One Collins Diboll Circle, City Park

Friday Nights at NOMA

May 23rd from 5pm to 9pm

Marc Stone performs from 5:30 to 8:30 pm

Unfathomable City Lecture with Rebecca Solnit and Mel Chin “Lead and Lies” followed by a book-signing with Rebecca Solnit and Rebecca Snedeker


“Rising Up” is an exhibition of Hale Woodruff’s Talladega College wall murals.  A dual effort between the High Museum of Art and Talladega College have preserved these works and set them on the road for lucky art-lovers to experience first-hand.  Grand in scale and luscious in color, these works will remain on view on the second floor through September 14th.


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.  Deposit your fundred dollar bill and take in this landmark show before it closes up at the end of the day on May 25th.


“Sphere of Influence:  Pictorialism, Women and Modernism” is on display in NOMA’s Mann Pailet Gallery on the second floor through September 24th and tells the story of networks and groups of female photographers and their impact on the history – and thus present-day – photography.


Ongoing at the Ogden Museum of Contemporary Southern Art

“A Sense of Place II

This comprehensive exhibit once again brings together some of the most important and significant acquisitions from the permanent collection to celebrate and expand upon the original vision for the museum. Ranging from works included in the initial donation from the Roger Houston Ogden Collection to more recent acquisitions, this exhibition showcases one of the most important collections in America.


“Shadows of History:  Photographs of the civil War from the Collection of Julia J. Norrell”

A traveling collection encompassing the most iconic photographs of the Civil War by the most prominent photographers including George N. Barnard, Alexander Gardner, Timothy H. O’Sullivan, and Mathew Brady.


“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, the late George Dureau, William Eggleston, Birney Imes, Roland L. Freeman, Marion Post Wolcott, and many others.


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


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

“Creole World:  Photographs of New Orleans and the Latin Caribbean Sphere”

A book and exhibition by renowned author and photographer Richard Sexton exploring the architectural and urban similarities among the culturally rich locales of Haiti, Colombia, Argentina, Cuba, Ecuador and New Orleans.  Trace these connections with this unique and enthralling exhibit.


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

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.


From Cameo to Close Up:  New Orleans in Film

Celebrating Louisiana’s role on the silver screen, this exhibition features posters, lobby cards, photos, press books and other ephemera from the silent era to the mid-1990’s.  Objects are from THNOC’s permanent holdings.


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.


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