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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Exhibits @ St. George Art Museum: "Into the Mysteries of the Super Real," "An Art Voyage through Zion" & "Recent Acquisitions" (SG: Jan 22 - March 19)

www.sgartmuseum.org, museum@sgcity.org
47 East 200 North, St. George, Utah 84770
Phone: 435.627.4525 Fax: 435.627.4526

Hours: Monday-Saturday 10-5 3rd Thursdays 10-9pm

with Art Conversations at 7pm

February 17th What is Real? Panel Discussion

March 17th Charles Becker

March 4, 2011, Soup N’ Bowl Fundraiser

January 22 through March 19th, 2011

Main Gallery Into the Mysteries of the Super Real: Charles Becker Paintings

Mezzanine Gallery An Art Voyage through Zion (Gifts to the Permanent Collection)

Legacy Gallery Recent Acquisitions to the Permanent Collection

Main Gallery Into the Mysteries of the Super Real: Charles Becker Paintings

The gorgeously glowing paintings of Charles Becker take us into the mysteries of the super real via the still life as subject matter. This genre goes back at least as far as Ancient Egypt. There are also beautifully preserved examples in fresco and mosaic from Ancient Greece and Rome, though so very many older cultural artifacts have disappeared.

The more familiar still lifes were done generally by 17th and 18th century European painters. Among the important artists of still life in the north are two women, the Flemish painter Clara Peeters (1595-c.1657) and the Dutch flower painter Rachel Ruysch (1663-1750). Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin (1755-1842), a famous French still life painter, is notable for the simplicity and quiet of his scenes.

Modern painters also explored this subject matter, especially Cezanne (1839-1906). In 1987, Pablo Picasso's still life "Sunflower" sold for $40 million, making it the most expensive piece of art ever sold at the time.

The still life genre consists generally of arranged examples of fruit, flowers, and game, possibly in or around a bowl, a cup, a pitcher, or other example from the kitchen or table and alludes quite directly to domesticity, the home and hearth. We see placed before us lovely temptations, even feasts. However, always there is the momentary allusion as only a moment is captured, as the flora and fauna depicted will not and cannot last. Like us, they will grow old and deteriorate. The cycle of time lies behind the beauty of what is depicted.

Becker at times adds a dimension of mystery, trompe l’oeil, whimsy, and/ or surrealism to his work. The silver chalice in the Blue Vase through which we can see the reflection of the painter is a device seen centuries before in Jan Van Eyck’s Giovanni Arnolfini’s Wedding Portrait of 1434. Becker’s ability to render reflectivity on silver, in particular, is quite extraordinary, as he shows us much in a very tiny area. The lovely lace, the droplets of moisture, the ripe luscious fruit, and the shining metals all exist in a shallow space in front of a backdrop notable for its dramatic bareness. The placed items almost float before us as intimate miraculous visions of beauty for us to marvel at and to savor.

Not surprisingly, Becker’s work has been featured in Connoisseur, Southwest Art U.S., Art and Antiques magazines just to name a few. As well, he has done work for the Nestle Corporation in Lucerne, Switzerland, Eglise Saint Denis in Tourtour, France, Absolut Vodka in Stockholm, and Beringer Wines in California. He has exhibited widely in France, Sweden, Japan, Hong Kong and from New York to California in the U.S.
We sincerely thank the Weinstein Gallery in San Francisco and Charles Becker for making this exhibit possible.

Mezzanine Gallery An Art Voyage through Zion (Gifts to the Permanent Collection)

Zion National Park, one of the world’s treasures is the theme of this exhibit. All of these pieces, in addition to being depictions of Zion National Park, are generous gifts to the St. George Art Museum. Therefore we are pleased to present these beautiful pieces (some not seen before) in an extraordinary paean to both philanthropy and Zion National Park.

Additionally, we will be exhibiting some of the recent treasures of the permanent collection. You won’t want to miss any of the wonderful exhibits or events at the St. George Art Museum.

for children

February 12, 2011

Grades 1-3 from 9:30 to noon &
Grades 4-6 from 1:30 to 4pm

$10 per student
Register w/ cc at 435.627.4525 or
At the Art Museum

Soup N’ Bowl occurs on March 4th, 2011 for $20 ( a ceramic bowl & lunch)

Main Street Gallery Walk on March 18th begins at the Art Museum & is free!

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