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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Auction has pieces for everyone

    Iraq Memorial #3 by Joe Rebholz is one of the art pieces up for Dinnerwares live auction. The auction is at 7 p.m. on Saturday.
    ‘Iraq Memorial #3’ by Joe Rebholz is one of the art pieces up for Dinnerware’s live auction. The auction is at 7 p.m. on Saturday.

    Dinnerware’s new exhibition of live auction material reaffirms its status as Tucson’s most eclectic art gallery. Its legal problems with the previous Sixth Avenue warehouse and its subsequent move to a smaller space Downtown had art aficionados questioning Dinnerware’s future, but the gallery has come back with a strong show highlighting some of Tucson’s best.

    The sculptures, paintings, collages, photographs, mixed media pieces and graphics show a wide range of talents and genres. There is no overriding theme or even a stylistic element pulling the pieces together, but the greatest auctions must contain pieces that appeal to everyone. You’re not buying the entire show, so there only needs to be a single exceptional work for the show to be worth it.

    But the Dinnerware exhibition promises at least a few decent selections for every viewer. There is more than enough material packed into the smaller space, and many of the works represent the finest local achievements for the genre.

    Jeff Falk’s “”They Have Played Forever”” is the epitome of the contemporary art collage: intricate but abstract, skilled but comprised of borrowed material, and frenetic in scope but not in execution.

    Falk used graffiti stencils, playing cards, pictures from books or magazines in addition to his own drawings to pull the piece together. Usually collages don’t work unless they have a main focal point, but Falk’s achieves a detached constancy that is similar to Radiohead’s artist Stanley Donwood. Its starting bid is $150.

    Another standout piece is an untitled photograph of distant jellyfish by Ken Rosenthal, starting at $250. While the small selection, less than a foot tall and half as wide, may be overlooked, its content is universal. The even smaller gelatinous white forms seem gripped in space, engulfed by the opaque monster of the black water. Their forms are delicate and rare, images a lucky scuba diver might glimpse from afar on a stormy expedition.

    The show also has a variety of traditional paintings, abstract, realist and hipster art. A larger work by Shinsuke Higuchi on the top of the back wall depicts a simplistic monkey torso with a drawing of an aristocrat man on its belly. An abstract mix of doodles by Fern Barber titled “”Night Awakenings”” features pop art colors like teal, yellow and a shining blue amongst a series of circles and icons.

    But a painting at the front of the gallery stands out, featuring a late 1800s woman reminiscent of Toulouse-Lautrec lifting her leg in a dance. Her body appears purposefully unfinished; her legs are shaded in plain black and other parts are just outlines.

    Behind her is a mix of a white cactus outline and a series of red hats on a stand. Although some “”Hats Off”” by Matt Cotten seems rushed or imprecise, it still serves as a good representation of modern hipster art.

    Dinnerware’s live auction is at 7 p.m. on Saturday Oct. 13 following a reception at 5:30 p.m. Participants must pay a $30 entrance fee, and all the profits go to Dinnerware.

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