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Sandcastles and sunspots: The year in art

It was a year of bracing histories — '60s assassinations, '80s pandemics, and four decades of hubris in Iraq. But 2012's best art wasn't all bad news.

By GREG COOK  |  December 21, 2012
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Bringing the exhibits to life at the PMA

This Friday, the Portland Museum of Art stages the last of this year's Artist Intervention series, a program launched in January 2012 in which local professional artists create on-site performances and installations to complement the visitor experience.
Inside the galleries
By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  December 07, 2012
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'Fear No Art 4' at Fourth Wall

A highlight of "Fear No Art 4," the Fourth Wall Project's exhibit "promoting and exposing underground art" is organizer Marka27's own paintings.

By GREG COOK  |  November 30, 2012
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R.K. Project’s sprawling ‘Micro-Eutopia’

If you're looking for where art is headed, "Micro-Eutopia," the 19-artist show at Sam Keller and Tabitha Piseno's R.K. Projects (204 Westminster Street, Providence, through November 10), is a good place to start.
Ambitious abstractions
By GREG COOK  |  October 19, 2012
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Sorting through the CMCA’s Biennial

The 2012 Biennial exhibition at Center for Maine Contemporary Art collects seventeen artists: ten by submission, seven invited.

By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  October 12, 2012
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Taking an observation on Winslow Homer’s oeuvre

"Weatherbeaten: Winslow Homer and Maine," a show of more than 30 Homer works depicting Maine and the sea, commemorates the opening the newly-restored Homer studio on Prouts Neck.
Blown away
By KEN GREENLEAF  |  October 05, 2012


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Ain't that America

The bad news of this season is that the sharp-eyed folks behind R.K. Projects will be closing up shop in November after their fall exhibits, which include a group of Providence psychedelics and site-specific installations in Pawtucket (461 Main St from O
Sassy signs, obsessive patterns, and more
By GREG COOK  |  September 14, 2012
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Melding classic with unconventional

If the stuff of the greatest magnitude in established art circles can usually be found at the PORTLAND MUSEUM OF ART , that truism is especially valid this fall, when the museum reveals a cluster of Winslow Homer retrospectives to celebrate the restorat
Coming Home(r)
By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  September 14, 2012
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SLIDESHOW: Works by Os Gêmeos at the ICA

The ICA Boston hosts works by Os Gêmeos, on display through November 25, 2012.
Through November 25, 2012
By PHOENIX STAFF  |  August 10, 2012
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Os Gêmeos delight and provoke

Fox 25 viewers are in a tizzy about Brazilian graffiti stars Os Gêmeos's seven-story mural depicting a giant masked guy in Boston's Dewey Square after Fox Boston asked on Facebook Saturday: "What does it look like to you?"
Brazilian surprises
By GREG COOK  |  August 10, 2012
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Performance art about ICP

For the sixth project in his ongoing "Pop Star" series, New York performance artist Neal Medlyn takes on the Insane Clown Posse, the illustrious Detroit horrorcore rap duo.
Juggalo fan club
By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  August 10, 2012


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SPACE wallpaper plays tricks with the eye

As one of its most brilliant venues celebrates its 10th anniversary, Portland is treated to one of the most colorful and engaging art shows of the summer.
It’s a jungle in there
By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  August 03, 2012
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Mass MoCa finds another country of art

These days you often hear how the Web has made everything more accessible, how the art world is flat, how the art capitals no longer have a monopoly on ideas and whatnot.
Defining Canada
By GREG COOK  |  July 27, 2012
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Salt students peek just around the corner

Sometimes a painting can only take you so far.
Looking into new worlds
By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  June 29, 2012
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At the Museum of Fine Art

Art criticism.
Hoopleville
By DAVID KISH  |  June 22, 2012
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Local artist contemplates the Arab Spring

Alina Gallo, a MECA MFA alumna with an academic background in writing and literature, is the artist behind "Rising," a modestly sized but stimulating collection of interpretive works — call them studies — that re-envision intersections of Western and Isl
Breaking the yolk of tradition
By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  June 22, 2012


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P.E.M. misses Ansel Adams's big picture

In the last gallery of "Ansel Adams: At the Water's Edge" (at the Peabody Essex Museum, East India Square, Salem, through October 8 on their site) hang three impressively giant photographs.
Symphonist
By GREG COOK  |  June 15, 2012
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Markham Starr’s ‘In History’s Wake’; and Linda Nagaoka

Living here near the coast, commercial fishing is never far away, but it can seem otherworldly, like an old romantic myth that surprisingly turns out to still be true.
The seafaring life
By GREG COOK  |  June 08, 2012
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Meeting ‘Strangers’ at Fryeburg’s Pace Galleries

Fittingly set in Fryeburg Academy's still relatively unknown Pace Galleries — a lovely showroom built on the annex of the school's Performing Arts Center in 2009 — "Strangers and Others" is a complex, mysterious, and densely packed assembly of figurati
The facts of figures
By NICHOLAS SCHROEDER  |  June 01, 2012
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The ‘2012 RISD Graduate Thesis Exhibition’

The star, literally, of the "2012 RISD Graduate Thesis Exhibition," the school's annual showcase of its graduating graduate student talent at the Rhode Island Convention Center is James Franco.
Stars on parade
By GREG COOK  |  May 25, 2012
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Slideshow: Recent works by Alex Lukas at Steven Zevitas Gallery

Recent work by Alex Lukas are on display at Steven Zevitas Gallery from April 19 to June 2, 2012.
From April 19–June 2, 2012
By PHOENIX STAFF  |  May 18, 2012


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Printmaking continues to matter

Essential to printmaking, and non-digital photography, is the frustrating, annoying time lapse between the creation of the matrix and the final image.
Paper, ink, and pressure
By BRITTA KONAU  |  May 18, 2012
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Alex Lukas’s post-apocalyptic landscapes, plus the New Topographics of Barbara Bosworth and Stephen Tourlentes

The skies are seared gray and scuffed by clouds that could be smoke from toxic fires along the horizon.
Doom sayer
By GREG COOK  |  May 18, 2012
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The McMillans’ video installatons are open to interpretation

Megan and Murray McMillan's videos unfold with dream logic.
Some assembly required
By GREG COOK  |  May 11, 2012
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Emily Nelligan inspires at Bowdoin

My friend the late Sidney Tillim has been much on my mind in recent weeks.
Seriously committed
By KEN GREENLEAF  |  May 11, 2012
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Daria Tessler at Craftland; AS220’s ‘Delicate Shudder’

The realm of Daria Tessler's "In the Realm of the Seedkeepers," an exhibit of drawings at Craftland, seems to be an often hushed, mystical place.
‘Realm’ of wonder
By GREG COOK  |  May 04, 2012


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A contemporary artist shows one way forward

There are many different ways to talk about Lesley Vance's paintings, yet we don't really have the right words yet.
Painting past and future
By BRITTA KONAU  |  April 20, 2012
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Matt Rich and Zoe Perry-Wood

If street art made a baby with Frank Stella's 1960s geometric abstractions, the offspring would look something like Matt Rich's show "Ghost Muscle" at Samson (450 Harrison Ave Boston, through April 28).
Fascinating rhythms
By GREG COOK  |  April 13, 2012
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‘#Occupy’ at Yellow Peril; Roger Shimomura at RIC

The art world and the Occupy movement have a somewhat awkward relationship.
Artist’s statements
By GREG COOK  |  March 30, 2012
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SLIDESHOW: ''Shapeshifting: Transformations in Native American Art'' at the Peabody Essex Museum

Selections from "Shapeshifting: Transformations in Native American Art", which is on display at the Peabody Essex Museum from January 14, 2012 to April 29, 2012.
On view January 14, 2012 to April 29, 2012
By PHOENIX STAFF  |  March 30, 2012