September 28 - November 1 2018

DEBORAH BRIGHT | JENNIFER CAMPER | JAMIE CASERTANO | LIZ COLLINS | JEANNE-MARIE CREDE | JAY CRITCHLEY | THEDRA CULLAR-LEDFORD | MIKE EM | HEATHER KAPPLOW | BLAKE KIDDER | JACKIE LIPTON | SHELLY MARS | DANA MOSER | CAROLE RAMER | FORREST WILLIAMS

Opening Reception: Friday, September 28, 6-8 pm

Deborah Bright

Drawings and Photographs

“After 35 years as a photographer I have returned to my first love, drawing. Photography involves a collaboration, mediated through technology, between the photographer and subjects in the world while drawing is the shortest possible circuit among eye, brain and hand. I enjoy both modes of expression and problem-solving and relish their differences. The photographs of toy horses (“Being & Riding” series) were made in the mid-1990s. I was interested in recapturing the mystery, beauty and power I’d felt in childhood as I played with my model horse collection, creating fantasies about being a horse as well as having a horse. Twenty years later, my colored pencil drawings explore more overtly queer historical and autobiographical sources, including diverse artists and pop culture expressions that continue to move me, the weird and scary political times we live in, and my life-long fascination with certain gender signifiers, particularly shoes, hats and neckties.”

Deborah Bright’s career as a photographer brought international recognition with exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; Fogg Museum, Harvard; Smithsonian Museum, DC; ArtSpace, New Haven; Leslie-Lohman Museum, New York; Artists Space, New York; Art in General, New York; Katonah Museum of Art, New York; Bernard Toale Gallery, Boston; Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Schwules Museum, Berlin; Museet for Fotokunst, Copenhagen; Nederlands Foto Instituut, Rotterdam; Museum Folkwang, Essen; Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, Ottawa; Vancouver Art Gallery. Her works are included in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art; National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian; Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, MA;, Leslie-Lohman Museum, NYC, Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University; Boston Athenaeum; Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University; Binghamton University Art Museum; California Museum of Photography, Riverside and the RISD Museum of Art.

Bright has received numerous grants, fellowships and awards including a Research Fellowship in Photography/Media Studies from Plymouth University; Artist in Residence, CEPA Gallery, Buffalo; Mary Ingraham Bunting Fellowship, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study; David and Reva Logan Award for writing on photography and grants from the Massachusetts Arts Council, New England Foundation for the Arts, Art Matters, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Bright serves on the board of the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art in New York.

Jennifer Camper

Comics | A Slow Intermittent Leak

"Comics are the bastard love-child of art and writing. What’s more fun than that? Also, all the tools of the trade are small and easy to shoplift.

My work is dark and irreverent with sly humor. I tell the stories that I’m interested in reading, and I give voice to my experience of seeing the world as an outsider. My perspective is female, queer, and mongrel (Lebanese-American). The work often explores how gender, sexuality, race and class imprint characters and their actions.

Behind all the artspeak is simply this — I want to tell compelling stories."

Jennifer Camper is a cartoonist and graphic artist. Her books include “Rude Girls and Dangerous Women” and “subGURLZ”, and she edited two “Juicy Mother” comics anthologies. Her work appears in numerous publications, comic books, and anthologies, and has been exhibited internationally. She is the founding director of the biennial Queers & Comics Conference.

Jamie Casertano

Photography

Jamie Casertano was born in Brooklyn, New York on Christmas Day in 1972. His discovery of photography occurred in his father’s basement darkroom. He did then, and still now, loves the dark. The urge to take photographs soon followed and later led him to study photography. He lives primarily in Provincetown, frequenting New York City where he once lived and began taking photographs. He seeks images in both the elusive dark corners and brightly lit stages of personality. Drawn to a diverse array of subject matter, his photographs vary from quiet to loud aesthetically, veiled to brazen in content and distant to intimate emotionally. The works of artists Diane Arbus, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Peter Hujar, Kembra Pfahler, Yasumasa Morimura and Martin Parr are of great influence, to name a few. Casertano studied photography with Mark Asnin, among others, at the School of Visual Arts in New York. At that time, he was paired with and mentored by noted photographer Bill Jacobson. He has had multiple solo [and group] exhibits at A Gallery Art, the Fine Arts Work Center and currently at AMP Gallery, each in Provincetown. His work has been published in Provincetown Arts Magazine, The Boston Globe, Simon & Schuster, and on multiple websites in the U.S., Sweden and London. His photographs are in the collections of the Provincetown Museum and The Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art in New York City.

Liz Collins

Embrace

Liz Collins is an artist and designer living in Brooklyn, NY. Employing a range of natural to synthetic materials, incorporating vivid colors, dynamic patterns, emphasizing textures and inventive structures, Collins enjoys pushing the limits and doing the unexpected across the spectrum of textile media and beyond. Her artworks surround the viewer in vibrating color fields to explore the boundaries between painting, fiber arts and installation. The cacophonic play of optics, texture, color and scale, recreates her wavering experience of the world as a place of stupendous wonder and cosmic energy.

She has had solo exhibitions at the Tang Museum at Skidmore, College, Saratoga Springs, NY; Heller Gallery, New York, NY; the Textile Arts Center, New York, NY; AMP Gallery, Provincetown, MA; AS220 in Providence, RI; and at the Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville, TN. Her work has been exhibited at the Museum of Arts and Design, New York, NY; the Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, MA; the Leslie Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, New York, NY; the Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee, WI among others. Collins was most recently featured in Trigger: Gender as a Tool and as a Weapon at the New Museum in New York.

Jeanne-Marie Crede

Shaman Super Hero

“My work has always been about weaving the different layers of who we are into one identity. The use of found objects has lent itself to be a perfect metaphor for this exploration. Each string, wire, ribbon, broken figure, and button allows for the “unknown other” to become part of the new object.

After many hours of playing super hero with my grandchildren, it struck me how powerful these characters are to them. I remember my daughter as a child having the same fascination for the feeling that she was bigger and stronger than anyone who would have challenged her. Then it dawned on me, that in these really bad times, we all need to be super heroes.

Thus, Shaman Super Hero was born. She pulls all the powers of the Universe together to create her cape, shield, mask and helmet. She keeps her eyes on both the seen and unseen world. Being able to see and understand it all, she uses her super powers to shine a light of truth on these insane times. Most of all she is the champion for all those warrior women who have always fought on the side of good against evil.”

Jeanne-Marie Crede is a self taught mixed medium artist who has lived in the Boston area for the past 40 years. She has shown in galleries, museums and other venues all over New England. She currently works out of the Vernon Street Studios in Somerville, MA.

Jay Critchley

Post-Truth Smoke Screen, film

Jay Critchley is a conceptual and multi-media artist, writer and activist whose work has traversed the globe, showing across the US and in Argentina, Japan, England, Spain, France, Holland, Germany and Columbia. He founded the controversial patriotic Old Glory Condom Corporation and was recently featured in Sculpture magazine. His 2011 show in Chelsea, NYC received key reviews in the New York Times, The New Yorker and the Village Voice. He created the inspired “Ten Days That Shook the World” in 2012 before the demolition of the 1953 Herring Cove Beach Bathhouse.

Jay recently returned from a two-month residency at the Santa Fe Art Institute where he launched his large-scale, multi-media project: The Whiteness House – tarred & feathered, dealing with whiteness, race and ethnicity.

His movie, Toilet Treatments, won an HBO Award at Provincetown Film Festival in 2002, where he was featured in 2015 in conjunction with his survey show at the Provincetown Art Association & Museum, Jay Critchley, Incorporated. The show also traveled to Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL.

He has taught at the Museum School at Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and has had artist residencies at: Harvard University; AS220, Rhode Island; Harvestworks, NYC; Williams College, MA; Real Art Ways, Hartford; Milepost 5, Portland, OR; Fundacion Valparaiso, Mojacar, Andalucia, Spain; and CAMAC, Marnay-sur-Seine, France.

Jay was honored in 2012 by the Massachusetts State Legislature as an artist and director of the Provincetown Community Compact, producer of the Swim for Life & Paddler Flotilla, which has raised $5M for AIDS and women’s health. His one act experimental musical, Planet Snowvio, about the meeting of Free Speech Movement leader Mario Savio and NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden was recently read at UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive.

He also presently his play at AMP in 2016, honoring the connection between Eugene O’Neill and Padraig Pearse of the Irish Rebellion: Bound East for Easter Rebellion.

www.jaycritchley.com

Thedra Cullar-Ledford

P-Town Babies

"I create personally meaningful art that combines careful craft with conceptual integrity. My work often consists of arranged collections of everyday objects, presented in some sort of container so that it makes a statement. It’s a mash-up of social activism, conceptualism, storytelling and autobiography.

The dolls started as a way to process the deteriorating toys rescued from my mom’s attic into art so that they could be thrown away without guilt. Over the course of that effort some of the pieces turned into portraits of people I know and others turned into social commentary dealing with issues around the ways American culture represents and shapes the “ideal female”.

Not long after finishing the initial doll painting series, I lost my breasts in a brief but intense battle with cancer. By choosing not to go through reconstruction, I suddenly found myself as “exhibit A” on the topic of cultural impositions on women going too far. The dolls, with their distortions, seams, and cultural symbolism, came back in a whole new body of work that is more active and purposeful than ever before."

“The universal desire to do bad things to dolls, and conversely to understand oneself as an abused doll when bad things are happening to us is hard to admit. Thedra Cullar-Ledford has employed the quality of dollishness throughout her career, and she has also made a trademark of holding things up to the light of day that most artists would hide from public attention. Combine these for the P-town baby series and few viewers wont both laugh and feel guilty for laughing afterwards.

In an era where the puritans have taken over pretending to be progressives it’s tempting admit to seeing these dolls in their individual grimaces, dismemberings and sexual postures as anything other than tragic victims but as a wise woman told me, no one has correct fantasies and second guessing one’s desires leads only to dishonesty.

I had a full-on romance with my GI Joe doll, and no he did not give me verbal consent, He might be the first man to break my heart too as I knew I would always play second fiddle to Barbie. “Fuck her” my 8-year old brain tried to formulate those words. This was the same period when I was erotically obsessed by the close quarters on some forgotten TV show about a submarine crew and remember asking my Mom why I could not invite the sailors to my birthday party. I started down the path of perversity young.

Despite my desire to treat Thedra Cullar-Ledford and her art as an honorary gay male, and her homoerotic male doll couplings as a projection of my own desires she is very much a cis-gendered woman and the type of Bad Girl Feminist artist that I love like Minter, Yuskavage, and Walker.

I am aware that these paintings construct meaning very differently when you know she is also a Mom who raised her sons with an admirable freedom to be themselves. My discomfort level rises sharply when she paints dolls based on people of color, and ashamed that I see race first and get tongue-tied discussing them, and yet even my discomfort is educational; The satanic and punk rock dolls land me back in my comfort zone.

These little round paintings, while lusciously painted serve as small circular mirrors. As I consider each I learn where and how I am conformable, where I am amused and where I am shocked the dolls serve as synecdoche for the fraught identity landscapes made more tense while living collectively under a misogynistic tyrant’s White House. I am sure that a few viewers will wander into the gallery and get royally pissed off by an artist who conjures the uncomfortable truths of the human mind without giving them an “out”, a place to proclaim the healthiness of their own fantasy lives. That is good because only boring artists make no one angry.” – Bill Arning, Executive Director, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston

Thedra Cullar-Ledford, the only child of two struggling artists, was born in Abilene, Texas, later moved to Mexico City and then to Eagle Pass, a dusty little noplace on the Texas/Mexico border. At just 16, she was emancipated in order to move to Dallas by herself to attend the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. From there, she received a full scholarship to California College of the Arts where she met her Stephen on the very first day. They were married by age 21. She received a BFA cum laude in painting and then attended the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art at Oxford University in the UK for a masters in printmaking and sculpture. The family moved 16 times in 20 years before settling in Houston to establish her practice and build Independence Art Studios which provides studio spaces to other Houston artists. They have two sons (23 and 15), a dog, two cats, and six chickens.

Mike Em

Heads and Boot

Mike Em is a visual artist and musician based out of San Francisco. He received his associates degree in visual arts from Cape Cod Community College and continued his education at UMASS Amherst where he was honored a Bachelor of Fine Arts in sculpture. He currently produces ceramic work out of Ruby's Clay Studio in the Castro district of San Francisco and has been since 2007.

Heather Kapplow

Formation

Formation (digital video, 2018) combines magical symbols, and rituals related to the transcending of binaries and the interlocking of elements necessary for the organization of a future culture better prepared to operate in a universe of entirely fluid boundaries. Watching it is an active love-war.

Heather Kapplow is a natural-born witch of full Askhenazi blood. She is a self-trained conceptual artist based in the United States. She creates engagement experiences that elicit unexpected intimacies using objects, alternative interpretations of existing environments, installation, performance, writing, audio and video. Her work has received government and private grants and has been included in galleries, film and performance festivals in the US and internationally.

Blake Kidder

Tales of an Awkward Childhood

Blake Kidder grew up in California with artist parents, and began drawing and painting at a young age. A quintessential child of the 80’s heavily influenced by television, skateboarding, pop culture and bad haircuts.

Blake’s art abilities combined with her fear of being broke and alone, led her to a career in advertising. She graduated from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena as an advertising major, but she took elective courses in art, photography and film and honed in her painting skills under the instruction of The Clayton Brothers and other notable alumni instructors.

Blake leans towards creating lowbrow art stemming from personal experiences and absurdities of life, often searching for humor in her own personal traumas. Even though she’d rather be a full-time artist, advertising in many ways has pushed the envelope of her personal art as she sees it as an outlet, the ability to tell stories and create ideas she wants to create, without a client saying “no" or “make the logo bigger."

Blake has lived and worked in Los Angeles, Amsterdam, Boston & Brasil. She currently lives in NYC with her favorite human, dog and cat.

Jackie Lipton

Hands Up, Don't Shoot

Jackie Lipton has an active career spanning decades. She has received grants and awards for painting and drawing, from the Pollock Krasner Foundation, granted three times, and from the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation's special funds. She received a NYFA boot camp award, and earlier a NYFAI collaborative arts award, among others. Her fellowships and residencies include the MacDowell Colony, the Cummington Community of the Arts (no longer there), and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts; in Iceland, she was awarded a grant at a small residency program from the Gallery Boreas, of a studio and apartment in Reykjavik.

Selected exhibitions include ARC at the Whitney Museum, the Art Resources Center of the Whitney Museum’s Gallery, the Aldrich Museum, Condeso/Lawler Gallery, WARM Gallery, the Art Resources Transfer Gallery, Gale/Martin Gallery, Gallery Boreas, Corinne Robbins Gallery, Life on Mars Gallery and Westbeth Gallery in NYC; the Schoolhouse Gallery and AMP Gallery in Provincetown, Mass. She is currently showing work at AMP Gallery where a show of new paintings and prints is planned for May/June 2017 and at Anthony Philip Gallery. Lipton works in her studio in Chelsea and lives in Westbeth Artist Housing in NYC.

Shelly Mars

Jungle Transposrt

This work is inspired by my love of the jungle. Hang it. Stretch it. Wear it.

Shelly Mars is a multimedia performance artist whose work explores sexuality and power using an expanding catalog of created personae. An originator of 80s/90s queer performance culture, she is recognized as a pioneer of contemporary.

Mars has performed over 15 solo shows, including Sex on Mars, Invasion from Mars, and The Homo Bonobo Project, her quixotic multimedia performance piece studying the sexuality of the Bonobo apes, which has been performed at NYU, Performa, and the Brooklyn Museum.

She was awarded a New York State Council on the Arts grant in 2010, along with grants from the Arcus Foundation, the Gill Foundation, and the Franklin Furnace Fund for Performance Art. She was an Artist in Residence at Museum of Sex from 2002-2009, and has led workshops on solo performance at Harvard and Brown universities.

Credited as the first “drag king”, Mars has been featured in several documentaries on the subject including the HBO television special Drag Kings, and the independent film Venus Boyz. A feature length documentary about Mars, The Dark Matter of Mars, premiered at New York City’s NewFest in 2006.

In 2017, Mars released “From Mars”, a series of high quality prints documenting seminal moments in her performance work, along with lithographs inspired by The Homo Bonobo Project. Her next multimedia performance piece is currently in development and will incorporate these images, as well as a chimerical video works.

Dana Moser

"...a Fantasy of Help from a White God"

“...a Fantasy of Help from a White God” opens a space of reflection on contemporary mythology regarding race. As a filmmaker, Dana Moser makes frequent use of digital compositing in work that blurs the lines between documentary, comedy and journalistic observation. He also makes kinetic sculpture and installations using custom software and algorithmic processes.

Dana Moser is a musician and digital artist working in film, installation and sculpture. Since the 1980’s, he has has been making irreverent art that addresses contemporary political issues in a variety of forms and media. In the early days of the World-Wide-Web he created the groundbreaking website “Adult Children of Heterosexuals”, named after the queer cabaret performance troupe of which he was a founding member. He’s also been active as a curator, producing exhibitions in new media in numerous venues. He teaches at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston in the Studio for Interrelated Media Department.

Carole Ramer

Berliner Luft: Women of Berlin during the Weimar Republic, 1918 to 1933 | Sculptures and photographs

“After a lifelong fascination with Berlin during the Weimar period, and after extensive research, I wanted to represent in papier-mâché sculpture some of the specific types of prostitutes, lesbians, and showgirls who made up the scene of that divine, decadent city. I also created sculptures of real-life women who existed then, such as Josephine Baker, Kiki de Montparnasse, and Anita Berber. During that time, the air in Berlin (Berliner luft) was said to contain a toxic ether that attacked the central nervous system and brought out underlying suppressed passions, making everyone horny, and sexual “perversity” prevailed.

To make my “girls,” I used newspaper and copper wire, followed by paper towel, my own secret glue mixture, acrylic paint, matte medium, and many layers of two kinds of special varnish. After each girl was finished, I photographed her extensively in various erotic poses, and created a slideshow. Mel Gordon’s wonderful book The Voluptuous Panic was a huge source of inspiration and information for the creation of my Berliner Luft girls.”

Carole Ramer is a lifelong New Yorker, with the exception of a year and some months spent in Berlin during the 1980s. She works as a professional hair stylist and makeup artist in fashion and advertising as well as with individual clients. She has always considered her work to be more artistic than commercial, sculpting with hair and painting with makeup, and as an artist she is self-taught, inventing her own techniques and methods as she goes. Currently she is working on a series of dioramas depicting a similar world to that inhabited by her “girls,” including a lesbian bar, a brothel, a cabaret, a “luxury class” nightclub, and a street where prostitutes congregate and work.

Forrest Williams

Field

"Painting is an intensely personal vision that comes from some inner core of yourself. It is intuitive and its meaning can be elusive, sometimes even to the painter. Each painting is like a piece of something that you spend a lifetime trying to figure out. It is a revelation of the unseen, the hidden.

My work is about relationships—and about separateness—but fundamentally the paintings are about the self. I'm interested in that place of tension between the containment and the expression of feeling, and in how to portray that visually.

The paintings depict individual men, but they aren't portraits. The men inhabit a particular place, but it isn't real. It's an ambiguous, interior territory, where things are and are not what they seem. The paintings are like stages upon which dramas play out—theatrical moments—and the men who inhabit them are the actors. The reality lies in the emotional core of this world, intensely felt but highly contained. My model Lorenzo called it "emotional purgatory." For me the paintings are often as much about what isn't seen as what is.

Although they're a group of anonymous men, they're at the same time self-portraits in their way. Perhaps these are worlds of their own making—worlds with outsides and edges and unknown terrains beyond, just out of reach. This is the region where desire and doubt, longing and reticence, intimacy and uncertainty coexist. It speaks of absence as much as presence."

Forrest Williams has shown his work in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the US and Canada. Current solo exhibitions include: 2017 “Ghosts”, 2016 “Lowlands” and 2014 “Arrival” AMP, Provincetown, MA; 2010 “Crossways” Marx & Zavattero, San Francisco, CA; 2007 “Porches” Heather Marx Gallery, San Francisco, CA; 2005 “Passage” Heather Marx Gallery, San Francisco, CA. Recent group exhibitions include: 2013-14 “Hello, Goodbye” Dolby Chadwick Gallery, San Francisco, CA; 2012 “Two Loves – Sex, Art, and the Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name” Kymara Gallery, Biddeford, ME; 2012 “SEEN” Visual Aid Gallery, San Francisco, CA; 2012 “New York Academy of Art Sixth Annual Summer Exhibition” Flowers, New York, NY; 2011 “Sea Change” Marx & Zavattero, San Francisco, CA; 2011 “The Elegance of Refusal” Gensler, San Francisco, CA; 2009 “Seldom Seen” Leslie/Lohman Foundation; New York, NY; 2009 “Figuratively Speaking” Lyons Wier Gallery, New York, NY; 2008 “Color Key” The Painting Center, New York, NY.

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