Flight and Fancy: Masculine Industrialism Meets Feminism in Revolt
The power and fury of the female form can barely be contained in a visually stimulating new show by John Westmark that is rooted in Southern tradition and personal discovery.
If you haven’t been to downtown Marietta lately, now is the time to go. Flight and Fancy, an exhibition featuring the work of Westmark—the 2012 Factor Prize for Southern Art winner and a Pollock-Krasner Grant recipient—is on view at 2 Rules Fine Art, located at 85 Church Street in historic Marietta [September 6-October 26, 2013].
This show comprises large-format mixed media pieces that all incorporate authentic sewing patterns. Westmark’s technical skill is most notable in his capstone pieces, Fortress (2013) and Kudzu Queen (2012). Each piece in the show displays a visually appealing use of varied line weights. Kudzu Queen demonstrates the strongest example of dynamic composition as it juxtaposes explosive organic and geometric shapes. The well-chosen and often bright colors balance the neutrals of the sewing patterns in each of the pieces.
Westmark’s earlier Flight series, which presents a stereotypically masculine and industrial constructivist take on aviation-inspired subject matter, progresses to his more recent Double Bind series, which includes bound and faceless female forms revolting against their garments in an aggressive feminist dialogue, denying older-world notions of “women’s work.”
The progression of Westmark’s career so far, from commentary on male and female stereotypes to his intricately nuanced insight into the feminine experience, leaves one key question: what’s next?
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