Monday, January 31, 2011

Art Opening for Cody Justus-

Caprice Bistro will host an exhibit of paintings by Cody Justus in the upstairs Sofa Lounge gallery. His explorations of “internal structure (and) external surface” are visually powerful, pushing his painting-constructs off of the wall and into the viewer’s head, provoking questions on the nature of raw material versus finished product.  The paintings vibrate with color and texture, these equal forces arguing and commingling in shared spaces, pushing the clean & tight against the rustic & weathered.  Yet the non-objective canvases remain dynamic, united, a testimony to his intuitive sense of design. A holism is preserved in the work.  I have seen three paintings by Justus, and each piece conveys a wide knowledge of art history and art creation.  First impressions brought associations of Arte Povera, where construction of the piece,the physical elements (raw, unrefined) and their manifestation, was paramount over the ultimate image-composition. Ryman and Stella come to mind, with Ryman’s painterly white surfaces enunciating the hardware of a piece, or Stella’s funky canvas-constructs breaking traditional frames and forms of canvas.  Even Albers could show up in Justus’s understanding of color, which is superbly developed but subtle.  Ultimately, Justus’s work is his own, soundly independent and self-sufficient, impossible to cross-reference into another artist or school of thought. The dialogue of his materials is his own creative voice.  His canvases convey an intelligent presence, and he will surely create a lively dialogue of paint and material, of internal and external, of plasticity versus volume, and produce a fine show out of his explorations.  The opening reception will be held February 3rd from 6pm to 10pm.