Showtime May 2013

imageShaping the Surface

Just seeing the surface of a work of art may seem limiting but in Shaping the Surface, a group show at the Southampton Cultural Center, that’s the whole point. The common thread among the five artists is dimensionality and tactility conveyed with diverse techniques.

Mixed media has a major place in this show. Charles Waller used the familiar contours of greeting cards, letters, labels and stamps, with tones of surrealism, humor and social commentary. Found objects connoisseur James Gemake re-casted the meanings of discarded elements through a reassembling process, emphasizing texture and open interpretation. Margaret Kerr’s works meld the intricacy of rug design with brick on board and paper, incorporating both relief and depth in the picture plane.

Using more conventional media, Bob Bachler sculpted layers of clay into geometric, curvilinear shapes, creating sculptures reminiscent of ancient artifacts. Pope Noell applied thick layers of enamel and acrylic color, along with modeling elements onto board, then carved into the paint to create three-dimensional abstract imagery.

Shaping the Surface will be shown through May 20 at Levitas Center for the Arts in the Southampton Cultural Center. (631) 287-4377,

imageObjects & Interiors 

The still-life: A reviled cliché to some, but sometimes it can make a profound statement. Hersh Fine Art in Glen Cove is exhibiting accomplished realist artists from across the country. Don’t expect any figures, all the paintings convey a variety of ideas using nothing but seemingly innocuous items as the subject with deeper concepts just below the surface.

Cast-off items like a realistically portrayed bridal veil and impressionistic shoes invite the viewer to contemplate the backstory of the image. The passage of time is presented across many of the works—paint on a dank ceiling peels and roses wilt ever so slightly around their edges. The usual still-life fodder of apples and pears appear too, but hold their own as stellar examples of the genre.

Objects & Interiors will be exhibited through June 9 at Hersh Fine Art in Glen Cove. (646) 508-7645,

michael isenbek

Michael Isenbek, Associate Editor, dabbles in both fiction and nonfiction writing, coordinates the Pulse event listings and writes the text for "Zoom," among other editorial tasks. He has a Master's Degree in Liberal Studies and a Bachelor's Degree in Cultural Studies with a concentration in Journalism from SUNY Empire State College.