Exhibition Review & Artist Profiles
ARTISTS AT THE UAC
This year's Utah Arts Council Visual Arts Fellowship exhibition
presents two distinct and fascinating artists, both pushing the boundaries
of aesthetics in their given fields.
The Utah Arts
Council awards the Visual Arts Fellowship to two artists annually.
This year's exhibit
will include SLC artist Jean Arnold’s large mixed-media drawings of abstracted, surrealistic urban
landscapes, and Escalante artist David Delthony’s organic, sculptured
The artists were chosen by this year’s juror, Townsend
Wolfe, director of the Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, Arkansas.
Wolfe finds that the artists share common strengths: “ Their clarity
of vision, inventive exploration of space, solid statements of form,
line and movement, caused me to understand and believe in their art.”
David Delthony’s “Sculptured Furniture” has focused for
over 20 years on the dialog between aesthetic and functional
values in the art of creative woodworking. His laminated and
sculpted forms transcend conventional ideas by expanding upon the
spatial boundaries normally associated with furniture. The artistic
sensuality which defines his work embraces both visual and tactile
senses, inviting and encouraging human contact. Simultaneously,
Delthony works within the syntax of fine furniture, incorporating ergonomic
guidelines and impeccable craftsmanship into the sculptured form.
This unique combination gives rise to his visionary use of fine furniture
for artistic expression.
Arnold recently exhibited at the Salt Lake City Arts Council’s
Finch Lane Gallery, and in the Summer Group Show at Phillips Gallery.
She has exhibited in numerous solo and group shows, regionally and
nationally. She has received several awards in juried shows
and an Individual Artist Grant from the Utah Arts Council.
This month's edition
of 15 BYTES provides profiles of these unique and intriguing artists
in their own words. Take a seat in one of David Delthony's sculpted
wonders as you listen in to his interview with Karen Kestler, or sit
in with Jean Arnold as she cruises the streets of Salt Lake, sketching, absorbing and reinvisioning the urban landscape.
The Utah Arts Council presents the works of these artists
from September 16th to November 1, with an opening reception of Friday,
September 20, from 6 to 9 pm. Jean Arnold will also give a Gallery
Talk on September 27 at 7pm.
The Utah Arts Council's Rio Gallery is
located at 310 South Rio Grande Street (455 West). Open hours
are Monday through Friday from 9 am to 5 pm.
Artist Profile - Salt Lake City
JEAN ARNOLD IS UP TO SOMETHING
an introduction by John Erickson, Assistant Professor of Art, University of Utah
Jean Arnold has been “up to something.” Her transformation
from competent observer to a mature personal voice spans ten years
of hard work—as a friend, for years I have watched this evolution
first hand. She has eschewed the expected use of perspective and
chiaroscuro to find a language beyond the pat categories of figurative
Arnold’s images come from the urban
landscape. She improvises from nature and freely reorganizes
space. Facts are subordinated in favor of a plasticity activated
by the interplay of relationships, rather than the illustration of “things.”
Forms arrive swollen, resonant, and oddly classical in their simplification.
Volumes breathe and exhale. Colors emerge, compose and disappear
into the grunge of tonal harmony. Opposites conflict and synthesize.
Picture plane is held in tension.
An unexpected surreal dimensionality
begins to live its own rambunctious life. Bee-bop-like rather
than impressionistic, Arnold’s paintings “get the job done” with a
surprising pictorial rightness. Deceivingly simple and elegant,
this hard won language has been fought for. Resolute observations
mixed with imaginative freedom are her trademark. Jean Arnold is
“up to something.” -- J.E.
photo of Jean Arnold's work table by Steve Coray.
To find out what Jean Arnold is up to, read "The Path is Rarely Straight"
TRASA, the Urban
Arts collective, has found a home in a big, handsome, old, brick, factory-looking
building on the west side of downtown SLC. The organization, which
takes its name from a Sanskrit word describing a moving collective of
living beings, is a charitable arts and education program designed to
connect area artists in order to share ideas, knowledge and resources.
During July and August TRASA presented "Emerging Women: all media,"
a juried show representing the artistic explorations of 41 local artists,
ranging from up-and-coming young women to grandmothers with a lifetime
of work that has never before been shown. The visual exhibition served
as a backdrop for two months of events showcasing female performers
in genres ranging from indie rock and drum n' bass to theater and modern
As is usual with such shows, the concerns of the participants in “Emerging Women: all media” were quite various, as was the quality of the work. . .
Artist Profile - Escalante
by Karen Kesler
last spring I was on a search for artists on behalf of two new Torrey
exhibition venues. A friend had mentioned that I needed to see the
work of two artists in Escalante – so one beautiful day I cruised down
Highway 12 (one of the most scenic roads in the United States) to meet
furniture artist David Delthony and his wife Brigitte, a ceramist, art
teacher and therapist.
Their 20-acre property is just west of town.
The Delthonys had arrived in southern Utah in 1996 from Germany and had
shipped David's massive woodworking equipment, and Brigitte's art workshop
and all their household belongings in two overseas containers. As
new pioneers to remote canyon country, they quickly built an expansive
workshop, established a vegetable garden for themselves, adopted two lively
dogs and restarted the careers they had left behind in Germany.
As a former furniture designer with an MFA in ceramics, I found I
found I had much to talk about with the Delthonys. I was very enthusiastic
about David’s beautiful sculptured wood furniture and Brigitte’s evocative
primitive pottery forms. David's upcoming exhibition at the Utah Arts
Council's Rio Gallery provided me an impetus to sit down with David and
talk at length about his work.
KK: David, you have been creating your unique “Sculptured Furniture”
for almost 25 years and have just this year received the Utah Arts
Council Fellowship award. In your biography I see mention
of New York, Turkey, Berlin, and just recently, Escalante, UT…….could
you tell us something of the career path which has brought you here?
DD: I was born and
raised in New York and from an early age had a definite interest
in wood and working with my hands. While receiving my B.A. at Haverford
College in PA, my interests developed further in the directions of art,
ceramics, sculpture and woodworking, but I was not yet ready or able
to undertake this path. After serving two years in the Peace Corps in
Turkey, where I also worked with local village potters, I returned to New
York with an increased desire to pursue an artistic career. . .