Monday, April 7, 2008

iheartartblog@randall scott gallery "i am who i pretend to be"-cara ober

this exhibit is on display until april 12, 2008. i happened to stumble into this gallery during a weekend excursion in the nation's capital. this is one show you would not want to miss. check out pics belong as well as artist info and links to the gallery and the artists. enjoy!!!

Artist Info:

Cara Ober painting

I find beauty in all the wrong places. In my paintings, a bird, a dictionary definition, and a dirty stain can all function together to create a holy icon and an ironic joke. In the work that I do, I aspire to create the paradoxical, awkward, and enigmatic quality of heartfelt poetry on a graffitied bathroom wall. In the work, I desire to see the world as it really is: gorgeous in contradiction, funny in absurd blather, and authentic in poignant longing.

Of course, my conception of validity is entirely subjective, based on my suburban upbringing, my sense of humor, and my own tunnel-vision rebellion. Although I prefer to hint at my opinions rather than dictate, to tease rather than to rant, I intend my paintings to be provocative statements to challenge conceptions of beauty, value, and truth.

As I work, my paintings constantly generate new questions for me, and, as discoveries are made and truths revealed, more questions arise, invalidating earlier judgments. I allow myself to playfully harvest imagery from bourgeois forms of adornment: wallpaper, textiles, tattoos, and graffiti, allowing narratives to organically evolve. Whether heightened metaphor or harebrained anecdote, I craft my visual narratives with the cheapest, silliest, ornamental nothings I can find, partly because I believe these ideas are culturally biased and, in part, because they are my birthright.

The formal questions that torture and delight me center on the unique range of marks the viscous media of paint affords me, and the awkward juxtaposition of linear drawing with it. I work in layer after layer, building up a surface, erasing past verdicts, and then looking back on buried decisions with nostalgia. Unselfconscious and hastily made marks intrigue me the most, but must compete with contrasting ordered systems for an argument to be raised on the canvas.

What do I want? Who do I love? How much is too much? How much can I stand to lose? The universal questions, for me, are the most personal, and, the more bewildering the answers to these questions, the more gratifying the search.

Cara Ober earned her MFA from MICA in 2005, focusing on a series of abstract narrative paintings, which still feed her current body of work. Ober graduated from the American University in Washington D.C. in 1996, where she majored in Fine Arts.

A painter, teacher, and writer, Ober exhibits her work locally and nationally, most recently in Washington, DC at Flashpoint and The Randall Scott Gallery, and in Baltimore at Gallery Imperato and Maryland Art Place. In the past year, Ober has also shown her work at the Riviera Gallery in Brooklyn, NY, the Arlington Arts Center in Arlington, VA, Artizen Fine Arts in Dallas, TX, the Karin Sanders Gallery in the Hamptons, NY, and in The Red Show in Ferrara, Italy.

Cara is a 2006 MD Artist Grant recipient for painting and took second prize in the 2007 Bethesda Painting Awards. Other projects include curating ‘The Jolly Cowboy’ at the DC Arts Center as part of a Warhol grant for emerging curators, and ‘Quintessence’ at Paperwork Gallery in Baltimore. Cara teaches art at MICA, Towson University and Johns Hopkins University and writes art reviews for various art publications like Art US Magazine, Art Papers, Gutter Magazine, and her own art blog, BmoreArt.

Please click here for Randall Scott Gallery.

Please click here for Bmore Art blogspot.

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