We’re delighted to announce that Rick Berry’s oil paintings are selected for group exhibition, “Infra:REAL the Art of Imaginative Realism” at Jonathan LeVine Gallery in NY!
“Cliff Dweller” (left) is from Rick’s series updating myths as metaphors in the metropolis. She is a modern fury, urgent and teetering upon the precipice of her apartment building, a commentary on anxieties of contemporary urban life. Neil Gaiman called it “heartbreakingly beautiful”. Also to be shown is “Cross Over”, (right) an expressionistic figure in transition. Rick will be at the opening on the 5th and we hope you’ll join us! Jonathan LeVine Gallery, August 5-22 Opening reception Wednesday, August 5, 6-9pm 6-8pm557C West 23rd St & 7-9pm529 West 20th St. NY
As many of you know, Rick doesn’t use models or photography, nor does he preplan his compositions. Beginning with random patterns on his painting surface, Rick reacts to the surface, generating isolated figures with emotion and movement, often simultaneously. This results in painting that appears to shift in time. He uses the act of painting to see, provoking an exploration of contemporary or visionary topic. Self taught; having left school at 17, his work aligns most with Boston Expressionist movement, with artists Jackson Pollock, Francis Bacon and illustrator Marshall Arisman as his influence.
This exhibition includes an array of great work from 37 artists Visit Jonathan LeVine Gallery now through Aug 22 for a feast! From the curator, Patrick Wilshire:
“Imaginative realism is the cutting edge of contemporary realism, combining classical technique with postmodern narrative subjects. Focusing on the unreal, the unseen, and the impossible, this genre offers visions of humanity’s mythic past, its unexplored future and, in some cases, its terrifying present. Just as science fiction serves for many as the archetype of postmodern literature with its fascination with the “other” and the unknown, imaginative realism brings this same narrative to the figurative arts.
infra:REAL is a group exhibition in the most classical sense, presenting the width and breadth of imaginative realism under a single banner. The exhibition features the work of thirty-seven artists, all of whom share a fascination with the narrative of “What if?” and have a strong connection to the mythic taproot that burrows deep into our collective subconscious. Their technical approaches vary, from academic to avant-garde, but all are among the finest realist artists in the world, turning your vision “infra-real” and giving a glimpse above, below, and beyond the reality that both comforts and restricts us all. “—Patrick Wilshire, Curator
Rick has an abiding interest in shape-shifters — across all cultures, past and future. Rick is the son of an Air Force pilot and so was raised in a kind of moveable feast of surreal fighter base communities, populated by people with stories from, well, everywhere. His father, fluent in Mandarin, was stationed in China in the late 40’s (as the Communist Revolution climaxed, engaged in a rescue mission, Rick’s father was the first, and only, person to land a plane in the Forbidden City!).
His parents collected art extensively throughout Asia. As such, Rick grew up surrounded by art and tales of China, Japan, the Philippines and elsewhere. Stories of Kitsune, a fox spirit, are part of this. It so happens that his friend (and sometimes collaborator) Neil Gaiman wrote a “new” folklore involving a kitsuné and a monk— Sandman: The Dream Hunters. A beautiful bedtime reading aloud for children. (We had three small ones then; all grown now, meme’s hopefully installed.)
The process of this painting is a story of shape-shifting itself. Beneath it’s surface are several paintings until Kitsune emerged…
For sales information, contact kim@Modern Eden.com (415)956-3033.
For a decade now, Hi-Fructose has been a major publication of the New Contemporary Art. They “deliver a diverse cross section of the most influential, genre bending art of our time…” We’re delighted to receive this recognition of Rick’s work in their magazine!
Hi-Fructose’s Facebook team also gave him a little love… “Myrinx” was posted on their FB Page – in a few days it had been “liked” 7k times, with 800 shares! Wow, we’re grateful to those who liked and shared. (screen shot below)
A great weekend in NYC (away from shoveling in Boston) to attend the opening reception of PHIL HALE’s solo exhibition at Jonathan LeVine Gallery. His new work is outstanding! It’s an impressive, thought provoking show. Ends March 21st so get there if you can!
We were happy to see many friends, and delighted to visit with Phil and his family. We’ve known each other a long time now, since Phil was apprenticed to Rick from age 16-18 and I watched as they quickly became collaborators. They last shared a studio in England (1986) and in Italy, 2009, they were the subject of a museum installation titled “Parallel Evolution.” where they once again collaborated live in front of a packed house.
At Jonathan LeVine Gallery, I found it interesting to notice that decades after sharing studios, an ocean apart, and each working his own method, Rick and Phil seem to be arriving separately at a similar mission. Each is examining “the instability and uncertainty that characterize our era” – yet with conclusions evolving in distinct directions. You’ll have a peek at Phil’s paintings in these camera shots but I hope you’ll check the gallery site if you are unable to see the originals. Enjoy!
After this standing-room-only lecture by Rick titled “LET ART THINK”, Oleg Brodskiy at Boston Festival of Independent Games, interviewed Rick.
Rick talks about Art as Frontier. He answers questions about the “other consciousness I call the monster” How and why do you want to release it to think with art – triggering the high processing values of which the mind is capable. He explains “using art to see” by scribbling and reacting to layed down shapes and random patterns, examining for phenomena. He discusses collaborative mind and tells us how “just this and no more” meaningfully connects artist and viewer.
Thanks for taking a look. Your comments are welcome.
We had a wonderful time at the recent reception for Spectrum’s Fantastic Art show at NY Society of Illustrators. This was the third Spectrum exhibition and Rick’s been privileged to have work selected for each. We appreciate the honor of being included with so many great artists and all the work Spectrum and the Society do to make it such a great show. A special thanks to the collector and his family for loaning this silver award winning painting for the duration. We enjoyed seeing old friends and making new ones. Lucky us, a night in Manhattan is always fun! Best wishes to everyone, from Sheila & Rick
We are pleased to announce Rick Berry’s Silver Award Winner,“To Absent Friends” is on view in the popular Spectrum Exhibition at the Museum of American Illustration, September 2 – Oct 18 Created for the set of CABARET, starring Amanda Palmer and produced by the American Repertory Theater, “To Absent Friends” is on loan through the generosity of a private collector.
Please join us at the Opening Reception: Friday Sept 12th 6:30 – 9, open to all NY Society of Illustrators 125 East 63rd St. NYC