The Provincetown Collagists:
Old school meets new school.
New School: Karen Cappoto, Pasquale Natale, Jay Critchley, James Ryan, Christopher Patterson, Lennie Alickman, Celeste Hanlon, Lydia Hicks, Zehra Kahn, Cleveland Storrs, and Pahdric Meagher.
Old School: Leo Manso, Robert Motherwell, Dorothy Seckler Gees, Hugo Rizzoli, Henry Dix, Henry Botkin, Jim Forsberg, Ray Nolin.
Collage is a layering of thoughts and ideas as well as of paper, printed materials, graphite and paint. To the collagist, the very gathering of materials adds yet another layer of meaning.
“As a person, he was like an innocent,” she said. “He was very childlike; money meant nothing to him. He’s one in a million. You’re never going to meet another person like him, on any level.” - Julie Heller.
Robert Motherwell was among the most literate and articulate of the Abstract Expressionists. He wrote extensively about modern art and in his work he became an interpreter of Modern literature. Ulysses and Finnegans Wake, by the great twentieth century writer James Joyce, have played a crucial role in the "subject" of his paintings.
Brooklyn born artist, Christopher Patterson works in multi media, most recently collage patterns with a quilted lyrical quality. He ttended the Students Leauge of New York, College of Santa Fe.
Long devoted to textiles, Natale accumulates high-quality upholstery and fabric samples for his houses, then hand-sews and assembles the colorful patterns and textures, collage-like.
He has utilized sand, Christmas trees, fish skins, plastic tampon applicators washed up on beaches, pre-demolition buildings and selected sites in his work. He is a conceptual and multi-media artist, writer and activist whose work has traversed the globe, showing across the US and in Argentina, Japan, England, Spain, France, Holland, Germany and Columbia.
“Art is a collision of new truths and awakened sensibilities; it is a serious understanding of the untried and unexpected,” Botkin once said. “Collage for me is the intensification of painting; it is an expansion that can be added to the progress of the artist.”
My subject matter is simply what inspires me about living in Provincetown. I’ve been exploring the concept of man made items vs. nature so you may see an animals or trees juxtaposed with a truck, boat or a building.
In 1976 he opened the Depot Gallery in Wellfleet, showing his own work and that of other Provincetown artists. His work was becoming more simple; he was using circles in squares, suns and moons and lots of red. He began to make collage with Japanese papers and the circles. Gradually the circles disappeared and the collage took over.
James Ryan is an artist based around New England working in 2-d drawing, collage, and found object arrangement. Interpreting universal symbols through intuition, repetition, and dreams, Ryan creates compositions designed to satisfy the picture plane.
Zehra Khan is a multi-disciplinary artist who likes to make things by hand. She works in drawing, sculpture, installations, performance, and painting on people.
Cleveland Storrs (biography pending)
"One of collage's masters during the past decade is Leo Manso, whose impeccable sense of placement and musical silence amidst a noisy world calls up the Quattrocento of Manso's beloved Italy, if not its grandeur. Manso's work is small in scale, secular and intimate in its subjects, but no less implacable in its ethical integrity, its aesthetic of formed sensuousness. Seductively beautiful as the work is at first sight, it holds its own like iron, a visual poetry that never compromises, never loses its inner life." - Robert Motherwell
Throughout her career as a writer and critic, Seckler painted and worked in collage, and her work was shown in several Provincetown galleries, and in the Provincetown Art Center and Museum. She married Jerome Seckler in 1937 and they had one son. Seckler received the American Federation of Arts Award for outstanding writing in the field of American Art in 1952. She died in 1994.
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