Monday, August 5, 2013

Bill Armstrong, Buddha & Mandala, Opening Aug.3, 2013

Sara Nightingale Gallery is pleased to present Bill ArmstrongBuddha & Mandala, opening Saturday, August 3, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Through Sept. 23rd.
         This will be Armstrong's 10th anniversary with Sara Nightingale. In August of 2003, Armstrong had his breakout show at the gallery. Since then he has gone on to become a well-established international artist. We commemorate that show with an exciting installation of new floating Buddhas hanging in the center of the gallery accompanied on the walls by Mandalas that were shown at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2008.
         Armstrong's Infinity Series, begun in 1977, includes a wide range of portfolios made by photographing found images with the camera's focusing ring set at infinity. The appropriated images are subjected to several manipulations - photocopying, cutting, painting, re-photographing - which transform the originals and provide new context. The results hover between the real and the fantastic, dreams and memory, and point toward a parallel universe. Place is suggested, but is never defined, and the identity of the amorphous figures remains in question. Extreme de-focusing enables Armstrong to blend and distill hues, creating rhapsodies of color that inspire meditation. He has said that color is the subject of the work. 
         Armstrong’s work was featured in a two-person exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2008. He has exhibited work in numerous other museums including the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC; George Eastman House, Rochester, NY; Hayward Gallery, London; Musée de l'Élysée, Lausanne, Switzerland; Centro Internazionale di Fotografia, Milan; and FOAM, Amsterdam. His photographs are included in the permanent collections of the Vatican Museum, Rome; Victoria & Albert Museum, London; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Brooklyn Museum, NY; Houston Museum of Fine Arts; and the Bibliothèque National de France, Paris; among many others. 

  Armstrong’s work appears in Face: The New Photographic Portrait by William Ewing and Exploring Color Photography by Robert Hirsch, among others, and his Mandala #450 is the cover image for The Edge of Vision: The Rise of Abstraction in Photography by Lyle Rexer (Aperture, 2009). He has also been published in numerous periodicals including The New YorkerThe New York Times and Harper’s. Armstrong is on the faculty at the International Center of Photography and the School of Visual Arts.

Meditation Room, a group exhibition in the project space, will run concurrently with Bill Armstrong's show and will include works by Eric Dever, Cara Enteles, Glenn Fischer, William Pagano, Kia Pedersen, Peter Sabbeth, Mike Solomon, and Ross Watts.

The exhibitions will run through Sept. 23rd. For more images or information contact Sara Nightingale at 631-793-2256.

Images: Bill Armstrong, Buddha 711, Buddha 712, C-Prints, 48" x 40", 36" x 30", 24" x 20"
Ross Watts, Open, Paper, steel, tape, 9" x 10" x 1"

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