UPDATE 1/25: This Wednesday’s event has been canceled.
Artist April Gornik will be in conversation with Parrish Art Museum Curator of Special Projects Andrea Grover in the first program of the winter Writers Speak Wednesdays series. The free artist and author talks and readings are open to the public at Stony Brook Southampton. Gornik and Grover’s talk is scheduled for Wednesday, January 27, at 7 p.m.
The two women will discuss 2014’s April Gornik: Drawings, an extensive compilation of charcoal drawings done by the artist since 1984. Included in this collection of 204 drawings are short introductory essays by Steve Martin and Archie Rand, as well as a long, informative conversation exploring Gornik’s process, subject matter and aesthetic disposition with Lawrence Weschler.
Of interest to writers, in a piece for The Brooklyn Rail, artist and writer Robert Berlind wrote that “Weschler … not only probes Gornik’s early development and responds deeply to the work in question, but also aptly introduces poetry by Kay Ryan, Seamus Heaney, Eamon Grennan, James Wright and Lao Tzu. These excerpts implicitly make the case for poetry, rather than theory or art history, as the most fruitful resource for discussing visual art.”
The book also includes an eight-page, handwritten score for a cello and piano composition, “For April,” by East End composer Bruce Wolosoff, inspired by one of Gornik’s paintings.
In his Brooklyn Rail piece, Berlind notes that in Gornik’s drawings, “water takes the form of the placid reflecting surfaces of lakes and rivers, mists and clouds, unaccountable spouts erupting skyward or mysteriously plunging down. Tumultuous surf and waterfalls cascade forward as though addressing you directly … She sustains representational clarity and nuanced visual transitions by contrasting textures of the dry, granular mediums of charcoal and, in many cases, pastels. This oxymoronic interplay of materials and illusion—dryness signaling water—suggests the metaphorical character of Gornik’s art.”
Gornik’s art has been the subject of solo exhibitions at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (1998); East Hampton’s Guild Hall Museum (1994); the Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art (1993); and the Parrish Art Museum (1988). She received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Guild Hall Museum in 2003. A mid-career retrospective began in fall 2004 at the Neuberger Museum of Art in Purchase, NY and traveled to the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, the Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery in Nebraska and the Allen Memorial Art Museum in Oberlin, Ohio.
As the Century Arts Foundation Curator of Special Projects at the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, Grover is initiating new models for temporary and off-site exhibitions via the museum’s Platform and Parrish Road Show series. In 2014, Grover received the prestigious Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award for the forthcoming exhibition, “Radical Seafaring,” which will be on view at the Parrish this year.
Writers Speak Wednesdays programs are free and open to the public. The evenings begin with a brief reception at 6:30 p.m. Readings begin at 7 p.m., followed by a Q&A and book signing. All programs are held in the Radio Lounge on the second floor of Chancellors Hall at Stony Brook Southampton, 239 Montauk Highway in Southampton.