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The Newport Art Museum, Newport, Rhode Island
November, 2002

Reveal and Conceal

 

We see what we choose to see. As artists we search for meaning and ways to reveal truth.

The theme of this exhibit "Reveal and Conceal" was selected by the members of "19 on Paper" to transcend the literal and explore the hidden or concealed layers of reality. Each artist's personal vision has inspired the variety of original works that embrace this concept.

Paper supports and informs our creativity. Monotype, watercolor, woodcut, collage, photography, mixed media and paper itself are our methods and materials. The range of subjects is bold and broad. Remnants of ancient structures reveal their presence yet conceal their function and purpose.
A garment may drape the from yet cloak the nature of the wearer. The spiritual is visualized through revelation, but the source remains mysterious.

Our work speaks to human relationships and the knowing and not knowing that keeps life fascination for both artists and viewer.

David Baggarly
Grace Bentley-Scheck
Sally Caswell
Frank Gasbarro
B.L. Green
Riva Leviten
Sally Neeld
Barbara Pagh
Sylvia Petrie
Pat Schreiber
Hiroko Shikashio
Kenn Speiser
Jan Swearer
Marion Wilner
Arlene Wilson
C.C. Wolf

ART REVIEWS OF THIS EXHIBITION

Providence Journal-Bulletin ART WRAPUP by Bill Van Siclen December 26, 2002

Diversity within unity from 19 on Paper
Ready to start working off those Christmas cookies? Good. Then let's start with "Reveal/Conceal," an exhibit of prints, drawings, photographs and other works on paper at the Newport Art Museum. Actually, there's a reason for the show's pulp fetish: all the contributors belong to 19 on Paper, a loose fellowship of artists who work with paper-based materials.

If the group's name rings a bell, that's probably because 19 on Paper has been around for a while (it was founded in Providence in 1986). Of that original group, only a few artists remain -- notably printmaker and former Brown University First Lady Jan Swearer.
Yet 19 on Paper has endured -- largely, I think, for the same reasons that music companies continue to release compilation CDs.

On the one hand, it's a savvy marketing tool for the artists, all of whom have solo careers in addition to their membership in 19 on Paper. On the other hand, it's a great way for the public to sample a wide variety of artistic styles and personalities without having to commit to any one in particular.What's not to like?

FOR THE NEWPORT SHOW, the group's current complement of 16 artists has even come up with a kind of visual overture. As you walk down the hallway leading to the museum's main Ilgenfritz Gallery, you pass by a series of small works, one for each artist, all displayed in the same black-rimmed frames.

The message of diversity within unity couldn't be clearer.

Inside the gallery, the entries range from Marion Wilner's updated versions of illuminated manuscripts to Arlene Wilson's mixed-media kimonos to Kenn Speiser's playful polka-dot prints, which are made by inking pieces of rotary-disc sandpaper, then running them through a press. Other highlights include Riva Leviten's quirky stream-of-consciousness collages and Grace Bentley-Scheck's gritty New York cityscapes.

Though the theme is paper, several of the show's works have at least one foot planted in trendy disciplines such as installation and performance art.

The shrouded figure in Sally Neeld's photographs, for example, could be part of an avant-garde theater group or an ancient religious sect. Barbara Pagh's Stone, Paper, Circle, meanwhile, suggests a primitive dwelling made, beautfully but impractically, from sheets of handmade paper.

© All rights reserved to 19 on Paper and its individual members. Absolutely no copying of material unless authorized by said artist.

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