Featuring William Clutz: An Overview of 60 Years

Also including Richard Britell, Matthew Chinian, Susan Hope Fogel, Scott Nelson Foster, Robert Goldstrom, Patty Neal, Dan Rupe, & Darshan Russell. Opening reception Saturday, September 28th 5-7 p.m.

September 25, 2019 through November 10, 2019

Carrie Haddad’s first purchase of artwork for her personal collection, some forty years ago and before opening her eponymous gallery in Hudson, was a photograph of New York City. Purchased outside the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the photograph (circa 1940) showed a group of pedestrians poised to cross the street in Manhattan. Central to the image was a man carrying his young daughter, slumped over, clearly spent from walking. Haddad’s love of the urban landscape is shared by a group of artists who capture facets of the metropolitan existence in their artwork and have become mainstays of the gallery roster. Painted Cities, opening September 25 – November 10, will feature paintings by Richard Britell, Matthew Chinian, Susan Hope Fogel, Scott Nelson Foster, Robert Goldstrom, Patty Neal, Dan Rupe and Darshan Russell. The headliner of this exhibit is William Clutz, an artist lauded for his 60 year artistic career painting ordinary, city street scenes transformed by a surprising light. The opening reception will be Saturday, September 28th from 5-7pm. All are welcome to come and meet the artists.
Renowned as the “impressionist of the contemporary metropolis”, William Clutz uses the city, in its entirety, as his subject. Pedestrians crossing streets become stars of the stage; the hustle and bustle of traffic and surrounding buildings are the chorus; each play their part in the overall composition. Lighting and color shift this observation of the everyday into a remarkable wonder. “It is surely Clutz”, wrote Gerrit Henry in Art News, 1979, “an artist who has rejected the niceties of representation in favor of the quintessence.” The young artist moved to New York City in 1955 and just four years later had his first solo exhibit at the Condon Riley Gallery. Clutz went on to show in major uptown galleries such as David Herbert, where, notably in 1962 he received a NYTimes review titled, Return of the Figure. That same year, his role in the revival of figuration was further solidified with inclusion in the MoMA group show, Recent Painting USA, The Figure. This was a pivotal turning point from which emerged a 50-year exhibiting career. Today, Carrie Haddad Gallery is proud to present a survey spanning six decades to celebrate Clutz’s unwavering artistic trajectory. This exhibit signifies a meaningful coda to the artist’s career, albeit not his legacy. Carrie Haddad has been the sole representative of this artist’s work for the past decade, so it is perfectly befitting that this definitive retrospective be held at her Warren Street gallery.
Richard Britell brings an analytical eye and unequivocal skill to his tightly painted details of post-modernist architecture. Small panels, often no larger than one foot wide, capture sections of buildings and windows spotted in New York City; brick facades, complex stonework and gothic, decorative embellishments are relics of a fading aesthetic that once dominated American urban architecture. Robert Goldstrom carefully observes scenic details and infuses it with a mood derived from soft, peppered brushwork and Hopper-esque lighting. In paintings like Methodist Afternoon, the artist uses color and fluctuating sunlight to create the illusion of density as a grid of buildings stack up against the horizon. Goldstrom’s views of Brooklyn, painted as studies or full-scale tableaux, are captured at various times of day to reveal shifts in color and perspective. Patty Neal’s paintings play with the concept of boundaries segmenting our perception of the city. Guard rails, bridge suspensions, and even nature finds ways of blocking out part of the dense backdrop of buildings. In Brooklyn Through the Trees, a large tree thick with foliage offers the viewer a quiet respite from the intensity of the skyline in the distance.
Susan Hope Fogel was introduced to watercolor painting by Deconstructionist artist Paul Ching-Bor. This marked a significant transition in the artist’s career as she departed from classical portraiture and realist still life oil painting and turned to a fluid, expressionist approach to landscape and cityscape painting. Merging forms with undefined edges interact with light and shadow in monochromatic paintings of New York City; she delivers an emotive portrayal of time and place. Scott Nelson Foster’s use of photography is an integral part of his painting process. He skillfully mimics the captured image in black and white with a highly controlled watercolor medium. At first glance, one may not realize the image is hand painted. But a closer study reveals the scene has been beautifully paired down, omitting certain details that would otherwise make a location unique. Typically American locations– a drive in, a mechanic’s garage, an old department store – focuses on the iconic mid-20th century style architecture that could be in Anywhere, USA.
Dan Rupe is best known for his renderings of smaller US cities likes Provincetown and Hudson. Bright swaths of color applied with bold strokes thick with paint are his signature techniques. A new series of ‘en plein air’ paintings rediscover the charming town of Athens, NY where the diverse architecture spans over three centuries and the city layout has essentially remained the same since the late 19th century. Fellow plein air artist Matthew Chinian records time and place of locations that are easily overlooked by others. From Upstate New York to Greenpoint in Brooklyn, each oil painting is completed in just under two hours and captures the light before time threatens change. Darshan Russell’s charming interpretations of people and places are not merely observations but are born of the mind and perpetual motion of life. She often paints cities she herself has visited or will find inspiration from photographs in newspaper clippings. Her delightful compositions of rudimentary shapes in an unrefined palette of primary colors are collected by audiences within the folk and naïve art collecting circles.

Dan Rupe

Darshan Russell

Eileen Murphy

Matt Chinian

Patty Neal

Taxi, 2019

Richard Britell

Robert Goldstrom

Scott Nelson Foster

Susan Hope Fogel

William Clutz