Showtime September 2014

Still Life: 1970s Photorealism

This is not a photography exhibit. Photorealistic painting, a Pop Art offshoot, makes the implied social commentary of Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup cans more obvious. It’s about stark, honest images of 1970s America, the artistic layers revealed simply by what is featured and what is left out of the work. Robert Cottingham explores vintage, colorful theater marquees, deriving meaning from fragments of each neon-clad display. Less glitzy, Ralph Goings captures every chrome-plated gleam from the classic rural diner, along with world-weary patrons draped over the counter. In 3-D, Duane Hanson sculpted incredibly accurate human beings wearing fashion-backward clothing and displaying themes of working-class exhaustion and resignation.

Still Life: 1970s Photorealism is showing until Nov 9 at the Nassau County Museum of Art in Roslyn Harbor. (516) 484-9337,

Every Tree is a Map

Jason Middlebrook sees his work much like a plant growing through a crack in the sidewalk—an intersection of the natural and industrial worlds. Such a philosophy brought him an MTA commission a few years back that saw Audubon-esque plant sketches adorning the walls of Brooklyn subway stations. Now in a gallery, he presents wooden planks shaped first by Mother Nature and then by his own hand. The striations and rings of age from the tree’s growth are complemented by Middlebrook’s own lines that follow the contours of his material and have their own geometry as well. His timber selections aren’t haphazard, despite the irregular look. The myrtle, walnut and other hardwood planks are sourced from a lumber mill and might have graced fine furniture in another life.

Every Tree is a Map will be on display until Sept 14 at Silas Marder Gallery in Bridgehampton. (631) 702-2306,

every tree is a map: image credit: liam lee, courtesy of silas marder gallery, bridgehampton

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.