by Matthew Kangas
Christian Grevståd Gallery Space, Seattle. Ongoing
Gallery Dei Gratia, La Conner. Ongoing
Fourth of the Big Four or Pacific Northwest “mystics,” as Life magazine dubbed them in 1953, Guy Irving Anderson (1906-1998) remained the most reclusive. He was also the only one who retained the mythic idealism of the classical male fi gure when his colleagues Mark Tobey and Kenneth Callahan and ex-lover Morris Graves shifted to mandalas, ocean waves and still lifes à la Francisco de Zurbarán.
PIERRE LEGUILLON: ARBUS BONUS
Frye Art Museum, Seattle. Sep 21, 2019 – Jan 5, 2020
Europeans take Diane Arbus’ commercial fashion photography much more seriously than Americans do. The French artist Pierre Leguillon focuses on Arbus’ fashion and product photography (executed with her husband, Allan Arbus) to suggest her influence on and participation in postwar American consumer culture. Stacking up piles of periodicals, including Harper’s Bazaar and the New York Times, Leguillon reminds us that Arbus’ kinky aesthetic grew out of a rigorous social conformity she could not escape until her suicide in 1971.
ROLPH SCARLETT (1889-1984): A LEGACY LOST AND FOUND
Frederick Holmes and Company Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seattle. Sep 27 – Nov 30
Born in Guelph, ON, and apprenticed to his uncle’s jewelry fi rm, Rolph Scarlett fled to the Art Students League of New York, where he studied under William Merritt Chase and John Sloan. After his first show he was hired (and had his work acquired) by Hilla Rebay, director of the Museum of Non-Objective Painting (later the Guggenheim). Scarlett’s early geometric and proto–Abstract Expressionist works are generally considered his finest.
NORMAN ROCKWELL’S AMERICA
Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture, Spokane. Oct 5, 2019 – Jan 12, 2020
Following on Deborah Solomon’s controversial 2013 biography of Rockwell, the National Museum of American Illustration in Newport, RI, organized this survey of 28 iconic oil paintings, many of which were the basis for Saturday Evening Post covers, along with all 323 covers. Rockwell (1894-1978) is now being reconsidered as a serious artist who balanced Cold War conformity with nostalgic rural and urban values, leading to civil rights advances and public school integration.
PHOTO COURTESY OF AMERICAN ILLUSTRATORS. GALLERY, NEW YORK, NY
EVE DEISHER: INDICATOR – A RETROSPECTIVE
Museum of Northwest Art, La Conner. Oct 5, 2019 – Jan 22, 2020
Educated in Great Britain, at the Epsom School of Art and Design in Surrey, Eve Deisher (1954-2017) exhibited widely in feminist fi ber art shows. She moved to Anacortes in 1995 after accepting a teaching position at Skagit Valley College. Her oeuvre encompasses feminist performances, collages of great anger and sadness, and 3-D suspended assemblages symbolizing human anatomy, animals and the natural world.