The September Aeqai has just posted. This issue represents a kind of transition period, from mid-to late August, through the first third of September, when the summer’s just about over, and the fall season’s about to begin in earnest. More are organizations, institutions , and for-profits program year ’round now, so we still have a full and rich issue for our readers.
We are going to try to cover more one-night performances, as we can, since The Contemporary Arts Center, in particular, has a full schedule of performances this year, curated admirably by Curator of Performance Art Drew Klein. As such, Katie Dreyer reviews a recent performance by Mark Mothersbaugh at the Woodward Theater in OTR. We note that her own writing has a wonderful syncopation to it. Aeqai will also be reviewing more books published by area writers, as we can, so we present my own review of arts advocate Saad Ghosn’s terrific new book, Artists as Activists (available at Joseph Beth Booksellers). And we hope to be adding regular coverage from London in an issue or two forward.
The September issue begins with Cynthia Kukla’s superb Part II analysis and review of this year’s Venice Biennale; her critical insights are terrific, and she really got around to a lot of pavilions and exhibitions there (and Aeqai was delighted to be included in their press office/coverage; we even got real credentials to go just about everywhere there). Other highlights of this issue include Jonathan Kamholtz’s brilliant analysis of area artist Stewart Goldman’s new almost minimalist landscape paintings at the Meyers Gallery at UC/DAAP. Goldman’s paintings have enriched this region for decades. Hannah Loew takes an astute look at the photographs Art Museum Associate Photography Curator Brian Sholis chose , with little information about them, and she adds narrative brilliance and fascinating analysis of these works about which little is known, but in a medium that’s become ubiquitous. Keith Banner’s review of a show about writer Italo Cavino at the Downtown Branch of the Public Library also showcases his own literary abilities (he’s the author of several nationally recognized books of short stories, too, as well as Director of Thundersky Gallery). And my own review this month is from a catalogue essay commissioned by Cincinnati Art Galleries in downtown Cincinnati, and looks at the work of 95-year old painter Beth Hertz, who was an important painter in the Synchromism movement earlier in the 20th century; she’s a bold and brilliant abstractionist.
Other reviews this month include Marlene Steele’s look at a two -person show of work by area artists Kay Hurley and Margot Gotoff at Brazee Studios in Oakley, and another show at Brazee, a curator’s look at area artists “Under Thirty”, by new Aeqai writer Craig Ledoux, an artist and writer based in Cincinnati. Karen Chambers reviews a juried fiber art exhibition at Kennedy Heights Arts Center, with mixed results, and Jennifer Perusek, Aeqai’s fashion critic, looks at Fashion Month in America and Europe, and shows how New York has become and increasingly important center for global fashion. And our LA correspondent, Anise Stevens, reviews two shows in the Greater LA area.
Our architecture and historical preservation analyst, Sue Ann Painter, takes a look at the building boom going on in Cincinnati’s cultural world, and compares it with times past and present in a very astute overview. Kevin Ott was in Paris this summer, and went to take a look at the new Vuitton Building, designed by American architect Frank Gehry, and gives us a good sense of the building and the contemporary art within it.
Aeqai’s two profiles this month are of painter/draughtsman Kay Hurley, by Laura Hobson, and of Denise Burge, one of Cincinnati’s most engaging and multi-talented artists, who teaches at UC/DAAP, by Susan Byrnes.
Louis Z. Bickett of Lexington offers two brand new poems for our readers, and Maxwell Redder offers three; you’ll note a slight new bite in Redder’s always sensitive poetry. My own three book reviews, beyond the Ghosn review, are of two novels by new Vietnamese-American writers, who are both very drawn to the noir sense of things; we see how their early experiences in Vietnam during that war have stayed with them. And the brilliant memoir, H is for Hawk, by English writer Helen Macdonald, is also reviewed. That memoir is one of the most astonishingly fine works of literature in years.
The September Aeqai again reflects the rich variety of visual art offerings on display in Greater Cincinnati, nationally, and internationally. We’ll be back in about a month with offerings from the new fall season. And please be aware that a benefit party for Aeqai will be held in The Weston Gallery in the Aronoff Center on November l0, 2015: mark your calendars, and we all say these days, for what promises to be one of the best art show/auctions ever held in this region. More details on that will follow. As always, we welcome comments on our columns, and thank you for reading Aeqai: go to www.aeqai.com and the site should come up in about two minutes. If you subscribe, which is free, you’ll receive this e-blast each month, which tells you that the new issue has posted, and what’s in it.