ART FEATURE: New works alight at Tayloe Piggot Gallery

By on May 13, 2015

Jackson Hole, Wyoming – One of America’s most celebrated contemporary artists will debut brand new work at Tayloe Piggott gallery this weekend. Donald Baechler’s “Six Roses” features newly completed silk screens that have yet to be shown in any other gallery.

Baechler’s work is defined by repetition of iconic symbols, said Carolyn Ripps, director of sales and marketing at Tayloe Piggott. He’s used roses in his work for years. This new work features dramatic flowers in blasts of bright colors, and each print has a unique and distinctive background. He emphasizes line, form, and foreground and background, she said.

“While these are prints, there is still an incredible amount of layers and depth,” Ripps said.

Throughout his career he’s remained committed to an emphasis on quality of line and balance. His work typically includes a central iconic image that interacts with a collaged background, giving it a simple, childlike connection, which conveys an innocence, sophistication and harshness.

Cowboy (blue), mixed media on canvas, 48’ x 60 by Nicole Charbonnet

Cowboy (blue), mixed media on canvas, 48’ x 60 by Nicole Charbonnet

Along with the six prints, the gallery will hang one of his recent collage paintings.Baechler’s work hangs alongside Nicole Charbonnet, one of the gallery’s artists from when it was once known as JH Muse.

Charbonnet’s show, “Tales, Trails and Traces,” appropriates images from artists like Bridget Riley, Matisse and Ellsworth Kelly, along with visual elements from films and geometric patterns from wallpaper. She painstakingly makes lines that might have taken other artists minutes to paint, and rebuilds them in a layered collage to create an architectural version of the work, Ripps said.

She often incorporates stereotypical images of America as a way of exploring our perception of ourselves as members of a society, Ripps said. Charbonnet uses materials from “our shared cultural memory” to not only evoke a sense of recognition and nostalgia but also inform current social and political situations.

Charbonnet’s work is influenced by memory and her hometown of New Orleans. She plays with the idea of how we differentiate between real and fictitious memories and dreams through ideas, emotions and feelings, Ripps said. Like Baechler, Charbonnet uses iconic cultural symbols she repeats in her work. While Baechler uses roses, Charbonnet uses western and cowboy images. Pieces in the exhibition include wolves, a fox and cowboys.

Her work is also steeped in layers. From afar it’s dramatic and striking. Up close you can see the under-layers, which give the sensation of a dream and the challenge of differentiating what’s real and what’s not.

Yellow Rose, 28-color silksceen on musuem board, 40’ x 31 by Donald Baechler

Yellow Rose, 28-color silksceen on musuem board, 40’ x 31 by Donald Baechler

The large mixed-media on canvas — the biggest is 66 by 96 inches — features plaster, collage, paint, modeling paste, paper and marble dust, which creates an iridescent sheen.

Both Charbonnet’s and Baechler’s works stand as solo shows, Ripps said. “But there is this connection that is more accidental than purposeful in that both [artists] work in these iconic, repetitive symbols and [they] complement each other,” Ripps said.

The opening Friday also includes a performance by Contemporary Dance Wyoming, which serves as a preview to Dancers’ Workshop’s summer season. The performance is an exploration of the creative process, said Amanda Flosbach, development director with Dancers’ Workshop. The piece, created by artistic director Babs Case specifically for the space, won’t treat the gallery like a stage. Instead of moving across the floor, dancers will work more vertically to maximize the space, Flosbach said.

The new piece is inspired by Charbonnet’s work dealing with the layers of the mind that create memory. There also will be improvisation mingled into structured dance, she said.

The performance will be the second for the company in the gallery. Gallery owner Tayloe Piggott believes in the idea of collaboration. It’s exciting to host another art form, Ripps said. It brings another perspective and interpretation of the artwork and deepens the conversation about Charbonnet’s ideas.

The performance, which starts at about 6:30 p.m., marks the start of Dancers’ Workshop’s summer season that includes performances from Contemporary Dance Wyoming, New York City Ballet Moves, and Bill T. Jones. People can buy tickets at the gallery Friday.

Donald Baechler, “Six Roses,” Nicole Charbonnet, “Tales, Trails and Traces,” opening reception 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, show hangs through June 28. Performance from Contemporary Dance Wyoming 6:30 p.m. Friday, at Tayloe Piggott Gallery.

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