Rock, Paper, Scissors
Brad Greenwood and Sam Funk
This Exhibition features two artists that at first glance appear as polar opposites. Brad Greenwood is a painter and Sam Funk is a sculptor. The light, hovering ephemerality and transient imagery of Greenwood is juxtaposed with the gravity of carved stone. However, in this show the stone reveals an urge to fly while the paintings convert the unendurable lightness of being in our contemporary culture into a playful parade of ever changing images.
Greenwood describes his paintings as scenes in a play with actors coming on and off the stage, drawing upon his personal story but also fed by his deep fondness of art history. While each character is his own, his figures often mingle with iconic likenesses from paintings by classic painters and modern masters like Alice Neel, David Hockney, Roy Lichtenstein and others. His work utilizes figuration, abstraction, myth, and reality in equal parts and in new ways, creating narratives of personal emotion complicated by a deep and energizing love of paint and the history of art.
For Rock, Paper, Scissors, Greenwood discovered a new daily practice: what began as sending simple found or collected postcards to friends became a daily practice of creating hundreds of postcard collages, with the small scale and ephemeral nature of postcard making informing his larger works. As Greenwood says, “The postcard project helped me work faster and looser than in previous bodies of work. The postcard images also enabled me to work out feelings of frustration, anger, and confusion about our current political world and declining environment. Dark humor and wonder -while always part of my work- are more present here than ever before.
Sam Funk’s sculptures make the impossibly heavy take flight. Funk says of his work, “transforming stone into an object of flight is antithetical to all we know, yet there is a world out there, in our universe, where stone flies.” Sam Funk, whose background had been in creative writing as well as script writing for television, putting word to paper had often been a frantic process toward fluid dialogue. Having strayed more recently toward the visual arts and stone carving, this sort of distillation is still paramount. His chosen narratives about the airborne and the grounded in conflict, are rendered in the gravity bound material, stone. This intended folly and the artists various poses of form that resemble paper airplanes give his sculptures an elegant figurative quality. Some even try to metamorphose into feathered birds of flight only to be grounded by their material make-up. The results are all at once highly crafted, humorous and poignant.
Rock, Paper, Scissors will be on exhibit through November 16, 2019. The Gallery hours are Tuesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm and Sunday noon – 4pm.
Opening Reception: Saturday, October 19
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza