Tag Archives: dc

ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY in the Alexandria Times

20 Dec

 

City creatives: Rosemary Covey

Rosemary Covey first came to the Torpedo Factory at the age of 22 and has remained an artist at the art center for over 40 years. (Courtesy photo)

FacebooktwittermailBy Cody Mello-Klein | cmelloklein@alextimes.com

Art has never come easy to Rosemary Covey.

The long-time wood engraver and painter has spent the last 40 years at the Torpedo Factory with collections of her work on display around the world, yet the process of making her work hasn’t gotten easier. The challenge – the fear, “the edge,” in Covey’s words – is intrinsic to her work.

“You kind of have to skate this edge between being very uncomfortable and yet still being able to have the skills and be conscious yet almost unconscious at the same time,” Covey said. “As soon as you relax, the thing starts to not work. It can work, but it won’t have life to it.”

Given Covey’s preoccupation with death, fragility and the darker side of the natural world, the sentiment might seem at odds with her work, but her wood engravings and paintings come to life precisely because of that tension.

“My work has that duality to some extent,” Covey said. “It used to be what people always considered very dark with themes connecting to medicine and death and fragility. But out of that came a series of work that surprisingly had great, larger appeal.”

Covey was born in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1954, a time of intense social and political upheaval. She left the country at age 10 with her family because her father had been invited to pursue a Ph.D. in the U.S.

“Sins of the Fathers” (Courtesy image)

Covey’s formative memories of South Africa are still tinged with nostalgia – the memories of a child unaware of the time in which she was growing up, happy in the self-contained world of her family.

It’s also a nostalgia for the early days of her artistic curiosity. At five years old, Covey was expressing an interest in creative expression both in class and at home, where she worked on crafts with her grandmother.

“She had big boxes of scraps and we made things together all the time, so leaving South Africa was hard for me because she and I spent all our time together,” Covey said. “She was the biggest influence on my life ever.”

Covey and her family ended up moving to Ann Arbor, Michigan, where her father finished his Ph.D. at the University of Michigan. The family then moved to Ashfield, Massachusetts, where Covey’s father had secured a position at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

In Ashfield, Covey’s passion for the arts continued to blossom. An art teacher at Williston Northampton School introduced her to print engraving at the age of 14; Covey returned years later, after college, to learn wood engraving from the same teacher.

Covey was set on the path. She knew she wanted to make art, but, like many artists, she found barriers at every turn. Her parents warned her about the scary, impractical path of an artist. Collectors and artists openly questioned her ability at portfolio showings.

The cynics only strengthened Covey’s determination. Covey’s early career was defined by finding a way around the blockades that were thrown up around her, she said.

Covey’s parents refused to pay for her college education, so she left Cornell University after two years. At 18 years old, she married a man who helped support her artistic ambitions, but after divorcing at 21, Covey found herself in need of a way to support herself financially.

“Then I’m on my own at 22 and I have to make a living,” Covey said. “My parents were like, ‘Now you’re on your own.’ So, coming [to Alexandria] I started doing commissions and slowly it became my career and way of making a living.”

Covey immediately fell in love with Alexandria. The history and character of the city were captivating, and the detail of the streets was like catnip for a wood engraver, Covey said.

“Red Handed” (Courtesy image)

Wood engraving, at its most fundamental, involves carving an image into a block of wood, applying ink to the face of the block and pressing the ink onto a surface to leave an impression.

It’s a process that is easy to learn but difficult to master, partially because of the intense concentration it requires, Covey said.

“You can’t make a mistake and if you do, you have to incorporate it, which really creates that panic, nervous energy that I think propels work,” Covey said.

Prints created through wood engraving also need to be designed in reverse, since the print will be ultimately be a reverse image of the original design. The reverse engineering makes executing facial expressions difficult for many engravers, but Covey said her dyslexia helps.

“I have extreme dyslexia. I have problems with all kinds of simple tasks, but the reversing of things comes more naturally [to me] than it might [to others],” Covey said. “It’s very difficult to do facial expression and … to get a likeness of any sort when you reverse it, but it helps to have dyslexia.”

Covey came to the Torpedo Factory in 1976, two years after it opened as an arts center. Although she can trace thematic patterns in her work all the way back to those early days, her work has evolved creatively and procedurally.

Death and fragility are still at the core of her work, but Covey has started to find new ways to explore themes that have captivated artists forcenturies.

In collaboration with botanists, evolutionary biologists and entomologists, Covey now finds new inspiration in the natural world, the duality of decaying lifeforms and life under the microscope.

“Insects” (Courtesy image)

Her series called “Insects” came out of a residency at Blue Mountain Center in the Adirondacks. Combining printing and painting, Covey depicted the bodies of butterflies and dragonflies as beaten and bruised yet beautiful.

“[One entomologist] said, as a scientist, you see them under the microscope and they’re battered and beaten and their wings and their short life are scratched,” Covey said. “They’re not pristine. And what I had been noticing was that, as they lie dead, they strike these human poses.”

Another series of prints and paintings focused on fungi and lichens and the above ground beauty that masks monumental, monstrous rooted webs just below the surface, Covey said.

“I don’t do it, when I work with a scientist, to be an illustrator or scientific illustrator,” Covey said. “[I’m] not interested in that at all. I’m interested in what they can tell me that sparks my visual imagination.”

Covey’s science-inspired and research-driven work hasn’t been limited to just insects and mushrooms.

“David with Astrocytes (Brain Tumor 8)” was part of an intimate series of portraits that captured the eponymous David, a man Covey had met at her Torpedo Factory studio, in various stages of treatment for a brain tumor.

“He looked really haunted. … He’d had all this surgery and you could sort of see what happened behind his eyes, that something monumental had happened,” Covey said. “He hired me [and] I ended up working for him for three years to do a piece on his brain tumor experience.”

“David with Astrocytes (Brain Tumor 8)” (Courtesy image)

Collaboration has become an integral part of Covey’s process, whether it’s incorporating a partner’s scientific knowledge or pieces from fellow artists.

“The best thing in the world is to find other people that are crazy about what they’re doing and that fits with what you’re doing,” Covey said.

Her process has changed even as she uses the same tools. Covey said she’s still driven by the same unknowable passion to create that drove her when she was alone at 22.

“It’s the same exact thing and I still don’t know quite what it is,” Covey said. “You get the idea in your head and then you have to push it. And you’re hoping that you’re gonna push it and it’s going to be better than anything you ever did before. … Once I’ve done it, I’m not even concerned anymore. It’s getting it there.”

For Covey, the elusive “there” is a place she can’t stop working toward.

“That’s the goal,” Covey said. “You hopefully never stop.”

(Read the first entry in the City Creatives series: Alexis Gomez)

Click HERE to view available mixed media works and rare wood engravings by ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY.

or contact:

Morton Fine Art, 52 O St NW #302, Washington, DC 20001

mortonfineart@gmail.com

(202) 628-2787

http://www.mortonfineart.com

AMBER ROBLES-GORDON’s ” “Fertile Grounds: of minds, the womb, and the earth” at The Nicholson Project

13 Dec

 

 

In DC, neighborhoods are facing an unprecedented amount of change in appearance, racial makeup, and social policies that runs counter to the once-prevalent idea of DC being “Chocolate City.” However, there are ways to balance change with paying respects to DC’s living history. The Nicholson Project, an artist residency that recently opened in Ward 7, hopes to demonstrate this change effectively with the inaugural resident artist Amber Robles-Gordon, who lives only eight minutes from the building. For me, it feels like a house turned into a relic, with its period-accurate rehab details; however, the Nicholson Project owners do not focus on the actual former owners, but highlight contemporary artists of color instead.

Robles-Gordon’s multimedia installation at the Nicholson Project, “Fertile Grounds: of minds, the womb, and the earth,” delves into emotional and physical histories of the bodies of women of color in scientific and medical contexts. From gynecologist and slave-owner J. Marion Sims to government-sanctioned Tuskegee experiments, systematic violence on Black women and their wombs plays a quintessential part of American history and medicine. Nowadays, such violence has evolved into defiling the space that bodies of color inhabit; a disproportionate amount of US pollution, for instance, is shipped off to poorer countries for processing. This installation, Robles-Gordon explained to me, “is a conversation about the deleterious effects that man-made products have on the earth in general and how that is in conjunction with what we put into our body: unresolved trauma, unresolved issues, unresolved energy.”

In tribute to the story and cells of Henrietta Lacks—the Baltimore woman whose immortal cancer cells were harvested without her knowledge or consent at Johns Hopkins in 1951, and continue to be used in research to this day—“Fertile Grounds” layers nuance into how informed consent shapes who and what gains access to bodies and parts. Her installation seems to ask: “Who has the right to examine and characterize what is happening here? How are they describing it, and are they using the correct tools and language to do so?”

The room-size installation uses every corner and cranny of its 12-square-foot space, from floor to rafters. White cotton strings, which remind me of Fred Sandbeck’s minimalist work, hang vertically, in a 3-D formation approaching the viewer. Suspended from the strings, colorful sticks wrapped in natural and synthetic fabrics form diamond shapes at different heights and depths. Each of the three layers is approximately 8 inches apart, dancing whenever you move around. The flat V shape of the overall installation, when seen head-on, channels sacred yoni power and fragility. Approachable only from the sides and front, the installation offers viewers no access to its inner layers, setting a subtle barrier of modesty and mystery.

Women, in Robles-Gordon’s interpretation, bear the brunt of environmental instability and physical violation. The artist focuses on the physical manifestations of trauma through fibroids, growths that spontaneously appear in uteruses due to hereditary factors and which are thought to be exacerbated through emotional and physical stress. The systemic disadvantage that women of color receive in medical contexts compounds these problems.

With Henrietta Lacks, her DNA was taken from her womb without her knowledge and parsed out to strangers, thousands of times, in a 20th-century form of legal slavery. More to the point, medical institutions and genetic science itself have profited off of her cells without the Lacks family‘s knowledge, anonymized as HeLa cells to conceal the fact that any living person was ever connected to them. To stress the ancestral and narrative power of Lacks’ ordeal, Robles-Gordon uses talking sticks, an indigenous artifact that uses twigs wrapped in different strips of cloth, to represent her DNA.

“Someone told me I have a fascination with materiality,” Robles-Gordon says. “Each stick is like a conversation or like a strand of DNA where it’s perfectly imperfect.”

She uses a rainbow palette with an evolved sense of how its placement completes the personification of humanity: the spirit of colors, feelings, and experiences. With her previous solo show in 2018, Third Eye Open, Robles-Gordon focused outwards, on the infinity of the cosmos; here at the Nicholson Project, she zeroes in on the unknowable within the body.

Stefanie Reiser, the owner and operator of the Nicholson Project, came to the idea of an arts residency by way of her main occupation in real estate development. When she was starting out, she says, she was “gravitating towards doing things that are related to the arts and how I could use space in a way that really could cultivate and be a cultural hub or a catalyst for creative activities.” She also took care, in her complete rehab of the Nicholson Project house, to bring in historically accurate doorways, flooring, and fixtures to reflect the styling of similar houses built around the same time, decades ago. In an interview, Reiser stressed how the property became an important symbol of history remade and re-examined for her. This building, which officially opened Sept. 14, offers paid residencies for creatives of all disciplines, stating on its Instagram that it creates “a safe, equitable space for artists to work on their studio practice and produce onsite creative activations.”

Besides Robles-Gordon’s installation, there is a photo exhibition entitled Goosin’ featuring local artist and Howard University professor Larry Cook, videographer Vince Brown, and photographer Beverly Price, alongside “Take a Stand” (2019), a neon piece by Jefferson Pinder. Goosin’, which according to the Nicholson Project’s Instagram means “the act of looking at someone or something in admiration,” features boys crouched in front of a blue backdrop, neighborhood businesses, and protestors that proclaim that “housing is a right, not a privilege.” They occupy a significant place in the gallery, well lit by the lights above and by Pinder’s artwork.

This current collection of artwork is both a study of medical anthropology and abstraction, leaving me with more questions than answers about how to value my own body and keep it from violation and degradation. Robles-Gordon’s confrontation of the past in the Nicholson Project’s rehabilitated space is a meaningful way to combat a culture that dissects and disseminates the bodies of Black and brown women, cutting deep until there is nothing left.

 


 

Admission to the Nicholson Project is free, but visitors need to make an appointment at info@thenicholsonproject.com to gain access outside of public event times. Exhibitions on view through the end of 2019.

Photos by Anne Kim / courtesy of the artist

 

Available artwork by AMBER ROBLES-GORDON

Contact:
Morton Fine Art
52 O St NW #302
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 628-2787
mortonfineart@gmail.com

Morton Fine Art exhibits MICHAEL BOOKER & AMBER ROBLES-GORDON at Prizm Art Fair 2019

25 Nov

 

Morton Fine Art at Prizm Art Fair this December during Miami Art Week
December 2 – 8, 2019

Prizm Art Fair
Morton Fine Art – Booth 3
Alfred I. DuPont Building
169 East Flagler St.
Miami, Florida

Morton Fine Art will be introducing fine liner ink drawings of MICHAEL BOOKER alongside mixed media artworks by AMBER ROBLES-GORDON.

 

MICHAEL BOOKER, Show Me the Wisdom In Your Movements, 2019, 30″x22″, fineliner pen, watercolor and collage on paper and Yupo

Available Artwork by MICHAEL BOOKER

 

 

 

AMBER ROBLES-GORDON, Their Eyes of God, 2018, 36″x36″, ink drawing and collage on paper

Available Artwork by AMBER ROBLES-GORDON

 

Morton Fine Art invites you to Open Studios, Saturday 11/16/19 from 12pm-6pm

12 Nov

 

 

Our November 16th Open Studios, in collaboration with STABLE, invites the public to tour Morton Fine Art and the creative work spaces of the artists and designers at 52 O Street & STABLE from 12-6pm.
Conveniently located a short walk from the NOMA Metro Station on the Red Line and Mt. Vernon Square/Convention Center on the Yellow and Green Lines, 52 O Street is located in the Truxton Circle neighborhood in Washington DC. Street parking available.
Morton Fine Art
52 O St. #302
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 628-2787

Don’t miss it!
Open Studios @52ostreetstudios next Saturday, November 16th from 12pm – 6pm in collaboration with @stablearts

 

 

VONN SUMNER’s “Only Painted Fire” exhibition at Morton Fine Art

9 Nov

On view:

Morton Fine Art

52 O St #302

Washington, DC 20001

(202) 628-2787

http://www.mortonfineart.com

mortonfineart@gmail.com

 

Neo-Byzantine (Red Hot), 2019, 24″x20″, oil on panel

 

 

Betrayal Wall,  2019, 24″x24″, oil on panel

 

El Ingres-Frida (Appropriation of Culture), 2019, 24″x24″, oil on canvas

 

Balloon Dumpster (The Party’s Over), 2019, 16″x20″, oil on panel

About Only Painted Fire
In the summer of 2018, I travelled to Italy to see many of my favorite paintings in person for the first time: the early Renaissance frescoes of Giotto, Masaccio, and Piero della

Francesca. Though I was very familiar with the work through reproduction, seeing it with my own eyes was a transformative experience. When I returned home to California, I began a nearly life-size copy of one of my favorite panels of the Giotto frescoes at the Scrovegni chapel in Padua (alternately referred to as The Betrayal of Christ or Judas’ Kiss). I wanted to inhabit the painting, rather than just look at it; I wanted to feel what it was like to make those paintings.

 

During the process of copying this painting, I became intrigued with Giotto’s stylized depiction of fire, which blazed at the end of several torches along the top of the painting. I realized I had never really painted fire, and for some reason this became an

irresistible challenge. At the same time, I was following the news and trying

to make sense of the polarized and turbulent political climate of our time.

Perhaps due to my newfound fascination with painting fire, certain phrases that

commentators and pundits would use grabbed my attention: “dumpster-fire” and

“trash-fire” especially, used as hyperbolic expressions of frustration and

outrage. 

 

I began to think more deeply about the uses and depictions of fire, symbolically and literally, and the ways in which humans have used fire in rituals. Fire is dangerous and out of control, which also makes it beautiful and sexy and alive. Fire is violent and

destructive, which leads to change, regeneration and rebirth. We speak of

‘trial by fire’ and ‘lost torches’; passionate people can be ‘on fire’’ and

have ‘fire in their belly.’ In California we have “Fire Season” and “high fire

danger” alerts. There are “fire eaters” to entertain us, and parties that “burn

down the house” and light “the roof on fire,” etc… All of these phrases and

notions have been on my mind this past year as I have painted fire and searched

for personal and artistic renewal.

 

The resulting paintings are not meant as a definitive or conclusive statement, rather as evidence of one painter engaging with the world, following a gut instinct, and doing “research paintings” in order to see what happens. The work can be seen symbolically or

literally, or both; and I invite the viewer to bring their own interpretations

and resonances to the occasion. No matter how we look at our current cultural

moment, regardless of ideology or affiliation, it seems we are living through a

time of great change. These paintings are in some way a response to that

condition.

 

– VONN SUMNER, 2019

 

 

Dumpster Fire III,  2019, 16″x16″, oil on panel

 

Dumpster Fire IV, 2019, 18″x18″, oil on panel

 

Dumpster Fire II, 2019, 18″x14″, oil on canvas

 

KOR, 2019, 16″x12″, oil on canvas

 

About VONN CUMMINGS SUMNER

 

Vonn Cummings Sumner grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, the son of a picture framer and a school teacher. Seeing the art that his father was framing, as well as travel in Europe, Central America and India shaped Sumner’s visual aesthetic during his formative years.

 

He attended the University of California, at Davis, where he earned both a Bachelor’s degree and an M.F.A. in painting, with highest honors. While at Davis he worked closely with Wayne Thiebaud both as a student and as a teaching assistant. Sumner also took summer classes at the San Francisco Art Institute, and is influenced by the Bay Area Figurative movement that centered around that school in the postwar period.

 

Sumner has exhibited nationally and internationally since 1998. He has been featured or reviewed in many publications including New American Paintings, Elle Décor, The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, L.A. Weekly, Art Ltd., Riviera magazine, Hi Fructose, Cartwheel Art, The Painter’s Table, Boom magazine, and Quick Fiction. Sumner has shown regularly throughout the Los Angeles area since 2003, including in a solo museum show- Vonn Sumner: The Other Side of Here- at the Riverside Art Museum in the fall of 2008. A second solo museum exhibition, Vonn Sumner: Stages, followed in 2011 at the Phillips Museum of Art on the campus of Franklin & Marshall College in Pennsylvania. Sumner’s paintings have been shown internationally in Venice, Italy; Manchester, England, and Switzerland. He is represented by Morton Fine Art in Washigton, DC.

 

Only Painted Fire marks his forth solo exhibition at Morton Fine Art.

 

 

Standing Man (on fire), 2019, 16″x12″, oil on canvas

 

Trashfire IV, 2019, 18″x14″, oil on canvas

 

Trashfire III, 2019, 18″x14″, oil on canvas

 

Neo-Byzantine (Japonaiserie), 2019, 24″x20″,  oil on paper mounted on panel

 

A Fire Without a Trashcan, 2019, 16″x12″, oil on canvas

 

Trashfire II, 2019, 14″x12″, oil on canvas

 

Trashfire I, 2019, 12″x9.5″, oil on canvas

 

Link to available artwork by VONN SUMNER

VICTOR EKPUK’s recently created “Mother Series”

18 Sep

We are very excited to announce the arrival of three new mixed media on paper creations by internationally renowned artist, VICTOR EKPUK. The three new works are from his “Mother Series” which were created this year during his time in the US.

 

VICTOR EKPUK, Mother Series 1, 2019, 25.5″x20″, acrylic, graphite and collage on paper, Contact for price.

 

 

VICTOR EKPUK, Mother Series 2, 2019, 25.5″x20″, acrylic and collage on paper, Contact for price.

 

 

VICTOR EKPUK, Mother Series 3, 2019,25.5″x20″, acrylic, graphite and collage on paper, Contact for price.

 

About VICTOR EKPUK

Victor Ekpuk is a Nigerian-American artist based in Washington, DC.

His art, which began as an exploration of nsibidi “traditional” graphics and writing systems in Nigeria, has evolved to embrace a wider spectrum of meaning that is rooted in African and global contemporary art discourses.

Guided by the aesthetic philosophy nsibidi, where sign systems are used to convey ideas, Ekpuk re-imagines graphic symbols from diverse cultures to form a personal style of mark making that results in the interplay of art and writing.

Ekpuk’s art reflects his experiences as a global artist – “The subject matter of my work deals with the human condition explained through themes that are both universal and specific: family, gender, politics, culture and Identity”.

 

Mr. EKPUK’s artwork can be found the permanent collection of the following museums and institutions:

Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture, Washington, DC, USA

Smithsonian Museum of African Art, Washington DC, USA

Krannert Art Museum, USA

Hood Museum, USA

Brooks Museum, USA

Arkansas Art Center, USA

Newark Museum, New Jersey, USA

The World Bank, Washington DC, USA

University of Maryland University College Art Collection, USA

The U.S. Department of State

 

Link to available artwork by VICTOR EKPUK

 

Morton Fine Art

52 O St NW #302

Washington, DC 20001

+ 001 (202) 628-2787

mortonfineart@gmail.com

http://www.mortonfineart.com

KATHERINE TZU-LAN MANN’s artwork featured in Harper’s Magazine

11 Sep

Harper’s Magazine features KATHERINE TZU-LAN MANN’s glorious mixed media creation, “Private Domain”. Her work was on view at the Carlow University Art Gallery in Pittsburgh in April.

 

My work’s abstractions arise from the subjects I portray: ecological and geological cycles, processes of chemical corrosion and natural efflorescence. With roots in traditions of Chinese landscape painting, my monumentally sized paintings and installations evolve a fantastic, abstract vision of the natural world. My latest work confronts the challenge: the resuscitation of landscape painting in a world where “landscape” is represented and defined through an ever-widening field of digital, graphic, and visual forms. How can a painting capture flux, abundance, waste, fertility, and the collision and collusion of diverse forms? How can it respond to the pressure we place on our era’s fragile ecosystem? My paintings explore both questions by sustaining tension between what is artificial and what is natural, between what is chemical and what is biological, between organic and inorganic. The paper on which I paint is not only a recognition of a tradition of Chinese painting; it is also a medium of vulnerability and expansiveness, susceptible to crease and tear as well as to collage and collation. My own role in the creation of the paintings strikes a balance between the purposive and the protective. I trust to process, chance, and change, but I encourage, direct, and facilitate all of these. In my most recent work, I hope to live in the tradition of landscape painting, experiencing it for what it has always been: an occasion for radical experimentation and confrontation with the world, in the broadest sense of the term that sustains us.

-KATHERINE TZU-LAN MANN, 2019

 

 

Available Artwork KATHERINE TZU-LAN MANN

 

Morton Fine Art

52 O St NW #302

Washington, DC 20001

(202) 628-2787

http://www.mortonfineart.com

mortonfineart@gmail.com

 

 

ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY’s solo “The Dark Re Imagined” opens Saturday 9/14/19

5 Sep
Inspired by evolutionary biology, ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY pushes the boundaries of printmaking in her solo exhibition “The Dark Re Imagined”. In this series of artworks she has collaborated with scientists and integrates fungus, lichens, animals, decay and broken insects.
ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY
The Dark Re Imagined
September 14 – October 9, 2019
Opening Reception
Saturday, September 14th from 2-6pm
Artist Talk at 4pm
EXHIBITION LOCATION
Morton Fine Art
52 O St NW #302
Washington, DC 20001
HOURS
Wednesday – Saturday 12pm – 5pm
Sunday – Tuesday by appointment
ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY, Just One Day 2019, 36″x24″, painting, found objects and plastic on canvas
ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY, Amethyst Deceivers 11, 2019, 36″x48″, wood engraving, thread, painting on canvas
About The Dark Re Imagined
My current work on fungus and lichens, broken insects and evolutionary biology is not scientific in the sense of medical illustration but a continuation of a life time artistically reacting to mortality’s hold on our subconscious. My earlier work was more overtly psychological. Now I glory in exploring texture and new methods of printmaking. After decades working alone I embrace collaboration. Working with other artists and scientists who all share passion for their chosen subjects and understand mine, they are generous in answering my questions with care and enthusiasm. As the young entomologist, Rebecca Cathleen Wilson told me in one of our many conversations, “we study insects because we love them but to do so we have to kill them, working with you gives them another life”. – ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY, 2019
ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY in her studio
About ROSEMARY FEIT COVEY
Rosemary Feit Covey was born in Johannesburg, South Africa. Her work is housed in over forty major museum and library collections worldwide, including Yale University Art Gallery, the New York Public Library Print Collection, the National Museum of American History, Harvard University, and the Papyrus Institute in Cairo, Egypt. In 2012 over five-hundred of her prints were acquired for the permanent collection of Georgetown University Library, Special Collections. She is the recipient of a Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship (Bellagio Italy), an Alpha Delta Kappa Foundation National Fine Art Award and a fellowship to Georgetown University Medical Center as the 2007-2008 Artist-in-Residence. Her solo museum exhibitions include the Butler Museum of American Art, the Delaware Center for Contemporary Arts and the International Museum of Surgical Science in Chicago. In 2014, a retrospective of her prints, paintings and installation work was held at Johns Hopkins University’s Evergreen Museum. Her larger public art has been installed world wide, including at Burning Man and at Culture Summit 2017 in Abu Dhabi. Articles on her work have been featured in magazines including Art in America, Juxtapoz, and American Artist Magazine. She has fully illustrated books for Simon & Schuster and William Morrow as well as for fine art presses.
While an artist in residence at Georgetown University Medical School, Feit Covey wrote one chapter and illustrated the text for the book, Maldynia: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on the Illness of Chronic Pain, published by CRC Press. Previously she worked with a brain tumor patient for three years chronicling his illness artistically. This work was featured on Studio 360, Public Radio International, and in articles for The Los Angeles Times and CR Magazine. Since 2017 she has collaborated with evolutionary biologist Paul Andrews working on a ground breaking book using evolutionary biology to understand depression and evaluate pharmacological and psychological treatments for depression. This work will be published by Oxford University Press in 2020 or 2021. An article on this work appeared in Sci-Art Magazine in 2018. Currently, she is working with two botanists and an entomologist who have greatly aided in inspiring and informing her most recent series of work.
She is represented by Morton Fine Art in Washington, DC.
About Morton Fine Art
Founded in 2010 in Washington, DC by curator Amy Morton, Morton Fine Art (MFA) is a fine art gallery and curatorial group that collaborates with art collectors and visual artists to inspire fresh ways of acquiring contemporary art. Firmly committed to the belief that art collecting can be cultivated through an educational stance, MFA’s mission is to provide accessibility to museum-quality contemporary art through a combination of substantive exhibitions and a welcoming platform for dialogue and exchange of original voice. Morton Fine Art specializes in a stellar roster of nationally and internationally renowned artists as well as has an additional focus on artwork of the African Diaspora.
Morton Fine Art
52 O St NW #302
Washington, DC 20001
Wed – Sat 12pm-5pm and Sun-Tues by appointment

Get to know MFA’s new artist MICHAEL A. BOOKER

3 Aug

 

Morton Fine Art is pleased to announce  we now represent the artwork of MICHAEL A. BOOKER. Please explore his video above which explores the inspiration and process of his incredible creations.

 

STATEMENT

My work is a creation of a parallel utopic, afro-futuristic community, told through a series of fineliner pen drawings.  As a form of escapism, this utopic world is crafted within and around the figures themselves by weaving natural environments into the people of this community.  Culturally significant hairstyles and clothing function as symbolic conduits; objects through which I begin to imagine and build this “afrotopia” as both a physical place and as an outer projection of an inner consciousness. – MICHAEL A. BOOKER, 2019

 

BIOGRAPHY

Michael Booker is a mixed media artist originally from Jackson, Mississippi that currently resides in Maryland. He received his BFA in Studio Art – Painting from Mississippi State University in 2008, and received his MFA in Studio Art from University of Maryland in 2012.  He has exhibited in various galleries across Mississippi, Alabama, North Carolina, Maine, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC. His work has been acquired by the David C. Driskell Center in College Park, MD.  Currently, he is an Assistant Professor of Art at Montgomery College Takoma Park/Silver Spring.  Booker is represented by Morton Fine Art in Washington, DC.

 

Available artwork by MICHAEL A. BOOKER

 

Contact Morton Fine Art for acquisition or additional information.

 

Morton Fine Art

52 O St NW #302

Washington, DC 20001

(202) 628-2787

http://www.mortonfineart.com

mortonfineart@gmail.com

 

SHOW US YOUR WALL – The New York Times feature on the art collection of Tony Gyepi-Garbrah and Desirée Venn Frederic including VICTOR EKPUK

1 Aug

THE NEW YORK TIMES

 

SHOW US YOUR WALL

Collecting to Explore ‘Origin, Culture, Form, Function and Race’

This Washington couple has floor-to-ceiling art as well as wearable creations and folk art curiosities.

Tony Gyepi-Garbrah and Desirée Venn Frederic at their residence in Washington.
Credit Ting Shen for The New York Times

By 

WASHINGTON — Desirée Venn Frederic and Tony Gyepi-Garbrah live in a light-filled apartment in the Trinidad neighborhood of Northeast Washington that is small in size but grand in scope.

The charcoal walls, stretching up to 15-foot ceilings, hold dozens of paintings, prints, photographs, 100-year-old textiles, collages, drawings, pastels, ceramics and antiques, conferring a museumlike aura on the home.

Ms. Venn Frederic is wearing art as well. Her floor-length slip dress, by the Brooklyn-based designer Fe Noel and the Chicago painter Harmonia Rosales, incorporates the image of a Yoruba deity, Oshun. Ms. Venn Frederic said the appeal of the dress was in its “fanciful and disruptive” character.

When the couple met four years ago, they were acquiring art individually. “One of the reasons I took an interest in Tony was because he understood legacy-building with art,” she said. She and Mr. Gyepi-Garbrah, 39, plan to marry later this year.

He is a first-generation American born to Ghanaian parents who works as an information technology engineer. He is also a photographer and painter.

She is of Geechee and Maroon ancestry. She was born in Freetown, Sierra Leone, and raised in Montgomery County, Md. Through her company, Combing Cotton, she pursues her interest in social equity.

“God Head” (2011), top, and “Untitled (Red and Black)” (2010), by Victor Ekpuk.
Credit Ting Shen for The New York Times

She also envisions creating a museum of fashion and related ephemera.

These are edited excerpts from the conversation.

TONY GYEPI-GARBRAH In true salon style, 75 art aficionados, collectors and artists stood shoulder-to-shoulder talking art, art, art.

How do you select works to buy?

DESIRÉE VENN FREDERIC Meticulously. I don’t merely collect what I like. I’m attracted to works that challenge the linear understandings of origin, culture, form, function and race. I call these aesthetic triggers.

GYEPI-GARBRAH We buy from galleries, art fairs and auctions. We also scour estate sales and private vintage collections. Often we buy directly from the studios of artists with whom we build friendships. I do a lot of research before acquisitions.

Is there a piece with an interesting back story?

GYEPI-GARBRAH The two mixed-media works by Victor Ekpuk. I went oversees to Galerie SANAA in Utrecht, the Netherlands, to acquire “God Head.” During that time I discovered that Ekpuk was represented by Morton Fine Art [in Washington]. They had “Untitled (Red and Black),” so I bought it too. Now the pair is in conversation. Ekpuk lives in Washington and we’ve become friends.

Figurative wood sculptures, made in Ivory Coast.

Credit Ting Shen for The New York Times

Top, “Chocolate City” (2010), by Steven M. Cummings, and “Inventions & Patents” (2014), by Charles Philippe Jean Pierre.

Credit Ting Shen for The New York Times

Those little wood statues lined up against the wall on the floor look like toys.

VENN FREDERIC They’re Colon figurative sculptures depicting occupations — policeman, doctor, baker — held by colonists in the Ivory Coast between 1893 and 1920. I have a collection of 150.

Your photos capture images that span decades and can be read as a history of our times. How do you think photography represents both society today and in the past?

GYEPI-GARBRAH Photography is a visual documentation of fleeting moments and changing landscapes, and, in this vein, we believe Steven M. Cummings is a master. “Chocolate City” speaks to forced migrations and the displacement of African-Americans from their native lands.

“Fred Meets Fred” is an oversized black-and-white double image of Frederick Douglass that contrasts past and present. A chain dangling lengthwise from top to bottom of the picture separates the two Douglasses. The bicycle wheel symbolizes change and continuance of time.

A sofa in the apartment by Sharla Hammond.
Credit Ting Shen for The New York Times

VENN FREDERIC We acquired the couch from the visual and textile artist Sharla Hammond, who was inspired by “Afro Blue” [a jazz composition recorded by John Coltrane]. The fabric depicts the heads of five Afro-clad icons — Angela Davis, Betty Davis, Pam Grier, Minnie Riperton and Diana Ross.

Above the couch that black-and-white painting seems very in-your-face.

VENN FREDERIC It’s “Cow in the Field” by Andrew Cressman. We operated a gallery in Washington and exhibited his works. I continually approached this painting with a sense of wonder and bought it after the show [in 2015]. It takes up a lot of our wall real estate. I appreciate that some pieces overwhelm, and this is one.

Read the New York Times article in full.

 

Available artwork by VICTOR EKPUK. 

 

Morton Fine Art

52 O St NW #302

Washington, DC 20001

(202) 628-2787

http://www.mortonfineart.com

mortonfineart@gmail.com