“The overall intent of my work is to develop a visual myth about the build up and aftermath of war.”
Jane Irish (b. 1955) works at the intersection between the decorative and the political, deploying both art and craft with equal engagement (and abandon) to create paintings, sculptures, and objects that stand alone, or are part of elaborate installations. The tension in Irish’s work arises from her genuine love of all things Gilded Age—the porcelains, tapestries, and gleaming interiors—and a resistance to the very systems of power that this imagery represents. A monumental painting of an ornate, rococo interior reveals, upon closer inspection, anti-Vietnam war texts embedded in the surface texture. These texts come out of a long-term project Irish initiated in collaboration with the activist group Vietnam Vets Against the War.
Irish’s formal art education began at the Barnes Foundation in the early 1970s. She received her B.F.A. in painting at the Maryland Institute College of Art in 1977 and her M.F.A. at Queens College in New York in 1980. She moved through the East Village scene before settling in Philadelphia, where she has been an exhibiting artist since the 1980s. Philadelphia’s Locks Gallery has presented two solo exhibitions of her work within recent years: The Home Front: Jane Irish’s Art of War, in 2011, and Sông Hương: Withdrawing Room, in 2013. “Withdrawing Room is at once deeply satisfying to look at and equally tricky to understand,” wrote The Huffington Post. Another solo exhibition, War Is Not What You Think, was on view at La Salle University Art Museum and the Connelly Library in Philadelphia in 2012.
Abendroth is a poet and a 2013 Pew Fellow whose book ]EXCLOSURES[ is newly available this month from Ahsahta Press.
This month in Fellows Friday news: Vera Nakonechny is named a National Heritage Fellow by the National Endowment for the Arts, Alex Da Corte exhibits at White Cube, and much more.
One of Philadelphia’s smartest and scrappiest small, no-profit art spaces, Marginal Utility is known for forging long-term commitments with artists.
Barbara Attie is a media artist and a 2005 Pew Fellow.
Osby is an award-winning contemporary jazz musician, a 2012 Pew Fellow, and the recipient of such honors as a Doris Duke Composition Fellowship and the Chamber Music America Composers Award.
Levy’s performance practice and compositions bridge modern classical music with rhythmic and improvisatory aspects of jazz, guided by his dedication to exploring the saxophone’s genre-defying capabilities.
The Barnes Foundation presents a series of artist-led walking tours in various Philadelphia neighborhoods that invite audiences to become contemporary flâneurs.
A trio of concerts from the world-acclaimed pianist Jonathan Biss, tenor Mark Padmore, violist Hsin-Yun Huang, and the Brentano String Quartet will provide new insights on the forms of expression found in the late stages of the lives of nine great composers, including Bach, Kurtág, Mozart, and Schubert.
In 2005 the Center awarded Pew Fellowships to 12 Philadelphia-based artists, and grants to 66 dance, music, theater, and visual arts organizations and practitioners in the greater Philadelphia region.
This touring exhibition is the first to critically examine the lasting impact that Riot Grrrl—the widely influential but briefly lived global punk feminist movement—has had on artists today. Originally presented at Vox Populi Gallery in Philadelphia, Alien She is now on view in San Francisco.
Frances McElroy (Pew Fellow, 2009) creates elegantly crafted documentaries that delve deeply into personal stories.
The Philadelphia Photo Arts Center is a nonprofit organization devoted to the study, practice, and appreciation of photography in the Philadelphia region.