Friday, January 15, 2010

Art for Lunch

Yet another great facet of Richmond is the proliferation of alternate spaces in which we can take in art.

That shows can be found at libraries, restaurants and coffee shops takes away any excuses for not having a schedule that accommodates gallery hours.

So let's just say that's how I ended up taking in the Nathan Motley show during lunch at 821 today.

His artist's statement was a fascinating expose of Nathan's circuitous path that led to the current exhibit.

It's his belief that his early years as a baker taught him the discipline required for art.

With advanced degrees from VCU and Pratt Institute, as well as the requisite attendant restaurant jobs during that same period, Nathan has been showing successfully in galleries for years.

The work I saw today was bold and colorful; clearly the artist favors bright red and yellow, ensuring bold contrast in all his work.

The paint is almost sculptural, layered and thickly applied.

Many of his figures have a Cubist bent, with fractured faces and disjointed body parts.

It's almost as if texture and color are battling it out on the canvas; visually, it's striking.

You can see it for yourself at Nate the Great's current show at 821 Cafe.

And, sure, since I was there anyway, I might have enjoyed a plate of my beloved black bean nachos.

But only because I was already there.


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