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Close Look: Alicia Gibson and Carol John at Howard’s in Athens, GA

This is the latest installment of Close Looka weekly feature sharing images of a noteworthy exhibition currently on view in the South. Check back each Saturday for a new installment highlighting a different exhibition.

Carol John, Bang, 2017; oil on canvas, 20 by 30 in.
Alicia Gibson, Diet Coke, diet coke, 2017; oil on canvas, 48 by 36 in.

Both Alicia and Carol approach painting with an exuberance and improvisational spirit. In one sense, they belong to a process-driven, expressionistic American painting tradition. The works are always in flux. Even when resolved, an energy of invention and chance persists. They constantly move, change, and grow—each mark a response to the prior. Both artists also play in the language of Pop art and signage. While their meandering painterliness may hint at interiority, the paintings are made for a public space. Text, pop graphics, and appropriated images render the surface of the canvas as a place of exchange and consideration. They reach outward while indulging in internal logic and poetics. Both artists revel in an energized space between the interior and exterior.

— Ridley Howard of Howard’s Art Gallery on Alicia Gibson and Carol John

Installation view of paintings by Alicia Gibson (right) and Carol Johns (left) at Howard’s Art Gallery.
Alicia Gibson, Go Acapella, 2018; oil on canvas, 48 by 36 in.
Installation view of paintings by Alicia Gibson and Carol John at Howard’s Art Gallery in Athens.
Carol John, Van Go, 2013; oil on Masonite, 11 by 14 in.
Alicia Gibson, Tit-4-Tat, 2018; oil on canvas, 20 by 16 in.
Carol John, Pea Cass O, 2013; oil on Masonite, 11 by 14 in.
Alicia Gibson’s painting Latent Inhibition (2018), left, and Carol John’s Oh (2018), right, on view at Howard’s Art Gallery.
Carol John, Oh, 2018; oil on canvas, 8 by 10 in.
Alicia Gibson, Never Be Alone, 2018; watercolor and mixed media on paper, 30 by 22 in.     
Carol John, Maison, 2017; oil on canvas, 24 by 18 in.

The two-person exhibition of paintings by New York-based artist Alicia Gibson and Athens, GA-based artist Carol Johns is on view at Howard’s Art Gallery in Athens, GA, through January 12.

Alicia Gibson lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She was born in Manhasset, NY, and spent her formative years in South Carolina. Gibson received her MFA from Hunter College, BA from Boston College, a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate from the Boston Museum School. She has had solo exhibitions at Marvin Gardens, Brooklyn; CANADA, New York; Loyal Gallery, Stockholm; Real Estate, Brooklyn; Julius Caesar Gallery, Chicago. She is represented by Loyal Gallery in Stockholm, and her work has been written about in Frieze, Artnews, the New York Times, and Hyperallergic, among other publications.

Carol John was born in Camden, NJ,  and now lives and works in Athens, Georgia. She received a BFA from the School of Visual Arts, in New York. She will be included in the forthcoming Atlanta Biennial at the Atlanta Contemporary, curated by Daniel Fuller and Philip March Jones. Recent exhibitions include Ivy Brown Gallery in New York, Hathaway Gallery in Atlanta, Poem 88 Gallery in Atlanta, and the Lamar Dodd galleries at the University of Georgia. Her work is in the collection of the High Museum of Art, Atlanta.

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