The Art Scene: 07.24.14

Local art news
Wolf Kahn’s selected works are on view at Birnam Wood Gallery in East Hampton through Aug. 2

Lady Gaga Portraits

“Portraits of Lady Gaga,” an exhibition of high-definition video portraits by Robert Wilson, will have its United States premiere on Saturday at the Watermill Center’s summer benefit and will remain on view through Sept. 14.

Mr. Wilson’s video portraits incorporate lighting, costume, makeup, choreography, gesture, text, voice, set design, and narrative. An ongoing series, which has previously featured Brad Pitt, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Sean Penn, Jeanne Moreau, and Isabella Rossellini, among others, the portraits draw on painting, design, dance, theater, photography, television, and history.

The Lady Gaga portraits have been primarily influenced by master paintings from the collection of the Louvre, but one is more contemporary in nature, rooted in the Japanese art of rope bondage. They were shot in London in October and exhibited at the Louvre the following month.

One Thousand Nights and One Night, this year’s fund-raiser, will take place Saturday starting at 6 p.m. The center’s benefit auction, featuring artwork by more than 50 artists, will conclude Saturday at 11:30 p.m. More information is at

New at Fireplace Project

“Contact,” an exhibition of work by Alisa Baremboym and Gregory Edwards, will open at the Fireplace Project in Springs with a reception tomorrow from 6 to 8 p.m. and remain on view through Aug. 18.

Ms. Baremboym uses such materials as silk, ceramic, plastic, steel, and gels to create sculptures that blur the distinctions between the organic and the industrial, suggesting machines whose functionality is questionable.

Mr. Edwards’s abstract paintings incorporate letters, question marks, and other recognizable graphic elements. Tim Gentles, writing for Art Observed, suggested that some of Mr. Edwards’s paintings “recall the increasingly vintage aesthetic of MS PowerPoint Slideshows and WordArt.”

Recently married, the artists live in New York City.

Mexican Murals

The Amagansett Library will present two talks on Mexican murals by Jane Weissman, a writer, arts administrator, and a muralist with Artmakers, Inc., a community mural organization in New York City. Next Thursday at 6:30 p.m., Ms. Weissman will discuss “Mexico From Independence Through Revolution: The Murals of Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, and Jose Clemente Orozco. The second talk, “Jose Clemente Orozco: Man of Fire,” will take place Aug. 7 at 6:30.

Nature at Ashawagh

“Natural Elements,” an exhibition of work by 11 artists inspired by nature, will take place tomorrow, Saturday, and Sunday at Ashawagh Hall in Springs. The show will include abstract work by Barbara Groot and Rosario Varela; figurative and impressionistic paintings by Kirsten Benfield, Susan Burr Carlo, Judy Clifford, Anne Holton, Mary Laspia, and Richard Udice; constructions by Katherine Crone; fish prints by Annie Sessler, and ceramics by Lisa West­on and Ms. Valera.

A reception will be held Saturday from 5 to 8 p.m.

Gornik Book Signing

April Gornik will be at the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill on Saturday at 11 a.m. for an outdoor reception and book signing in celebration of the newly published “April Gornik: Drawings.” The book brings together charcoal drawings from 1984 to the present and includes essays by Steve Martin and Archie Rand, an interview with Ms. Gornik by Lawrence Weschler, and a CD of a work for piano and cello composed by Bruce Wolosoff, inspired by one of Ms. Gornik’s drawings.

Complimentary coffee and breakfast pastries will be served at the event, which is included with the museum’s admission fee of $10.

“A Light in Harlem”

“A Light in Harlem,” an exhibition of paintings by Kadir Nelson, will be on view at the Richard Demato Gallery in Sag Harbor from Saturday through Aug. 22, with a reception scheduled for Saturday from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

Mr. Nelson, a graduate of Pratt Institute who lives in Los Angeles, is an artist, author, and illustrator whose work is rooted in African-American culture. The Sag Harbor exhibition focuses on the period of the Harlem Renaissance, a time of growth and experimentation for New York City’s black residents.

Mr. Nelson has exhibited in galleries throughout the United States and is represented in several public collections. He has also illustrated children’s books, 28 of which are in print.

Jonathan Cramer Solo

More than 60 paintings, drawings, and sculptures by Jonathan Cramer will be on view at the Southampton Arts Center from tomorrow through Aug. 17. Mr. Cramer, who has family on the East End and has visited the area all his life, creates colorful abstract paintings and sculptures whose swirling, geometric elements suggest helixes gone awry.

Organized by Allison Read Smith, the exhibition is the largest public showing of the artist’s work in more than 10 years. A reception for Mr. Cramer will be held tomorrow at 6 p.m.

New at Crazy Monkey

Paintings by Barbara Bilotta, Richard Mothes, and Mark E. Zimmerman will be featured at the Crazy Monkey Gallery in Amagansett from today through Aug. 11. A reception will take place Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m.

Ms. Bilotta’s goal is to bring out the interplay of light and shadow in her colorful abstract paintings, while Mr. Mothes paints the daily activities of people living on the East End. Mr. Zimmerman’s abstract paintings contain hard-edged, graphic elements, sometimes combined with splashes of looser brushwork.

Drawings by Dimon

“Artifacts II,” an exhibition of digital drawings by Roz Dimon, is on view at the Shelter Island Historical Society through Tuesday. A reception will be held Saturday from 4 to 7 p.m.

    Ms. Dimon, who divides her time between New York City and Shelter Island, where she has her studio, will be showing work from a new series of black-and-white drawings of iconic, everyday tools made with a digital brush. She took her first digital course in 1984, when her computer had only four colors.

Monoprints in Gansett

“Transitions,” a new series of work by Susan Kaufmann, a painter and printmaker who lives in New York City, is on view at Sylvester & Co. at Home in Amagansett through Aug. 14.

The series consists of black-and-white hand-wiped monoprints, some of which suggest emotional states, such as “Anxiety,” whose frazzled black edges poke uneasily into white space, or physical phenomena, such as “Rift,” in which a white fissure divides the black mass. Among other transitions, the series probes that between positive and negative space.

Knigen Estate Sale

An estate sale will be held from next Thursday through Aug. 3 at the East Hampton residence of Michael Knigen, an artist who died in 2011. Knigen was a painter and printmaker who, late in his career, turned to the computer for the production of digital photographic collages. His work was exhibited and collected widely during his 45-year career, during which he worked with such noted artists as Jasper Johns, Andy Warhol, and Robert Indiana.

The sale will include original artworks by Knigen and many of his contemporaries as well as the contents of his house, which include scuba equipment, kayaks, sterling and gold, lamps, bedroom sets, living room sets, china stemware, first editions and rare books, rugs, electronics, printers, a camera collection, clocks, pottery, collectibles, tools, and picture frames.

Information about the sale, including the address, will be available at and 48 hours prior to the event.