Saturday, October 28, 2017

Art of the Heart

Arte Del Corazon
The Dyer Art Center, NTID
Rochester Institute of Technology

The Dyer Art Center on the campus of Rochester Institute of Technology is one of the premier spaces in town to see art of all kinds.  This light filled room has been host to shows of a diverse sort: on one level there is a collection of objects created by Lee Hoag ( "25 Years ) and on the main level there is 
"Arte Del Corazon" ( Art of the Heart ) a show consisting of many works from the Latin Deaf Art Movement.

"Drowning"2005/2017 by Sara Roybal
in the show "Arte Del Corazon"

Teaching at R.I.T. over the years, I have had many students from NTID ( National Technical Institute for the Deaf ) and there were many fine artists among them.  The present show brings examples from Latin countries to help promote a dialogue and bring a broader audience to understand who they are and what they have to offer.  There is a large explanatory panel at the door to the show that gives the visitor clear information about this group of artists.

Latin Deaf Art Movement, explained....

Fine examples from this exhibition represent situations that help define these artists in society and how they deal with their circumstance.  Artists can give you a picture of what it is like to deal with their condition and maintain their integrity.  The viewer coming to this show can feel the intensity of the artworks, and it is said that vision can compensate in part for the lack of hearing and that is especially true when dealing with sign language.

Poetry and Paintings at The Dyer Art Center
from Latinx Deaf Art 

The present show brings up many questions,  one which persists in my mind - is why we here in the United States know so little about what is going on in the countries of Latin America as far as visual art are concerned.  "Arte Del Corazon" attempts to answer back that there is a history and a diverse culture waiting to be explored, so I hope our museums and other institutions follow this lead and help investigate, and open a discussion, and introduce this art to a larger audience.

Lee Hoag "25 Years"
A cornucopia of sculptural objects

Upstairs, the exhibition of artwork by Lee Hoag is a wide selection of objects created that have a machine aesthetic.  The surfaces are refined, the ideas seem to stem from a page on surrealism - because these objects look like they might have a purpose other than one of contemplation. Looking at Lee Hoag's art brings me back to the 1930's when design for the industrial age began to streamline and become more user friendly.  The artworks we see in this show celebrate the look of tools that we use today, and in fact highlight style and design, while still holding some sense of mystery.

Lee Hoag, artworks at
Dyer Art Center
on the campus of R.I.T.

My sense of history reminds me of the art of Picabia, and Marcel Duchamp when I see Lee Hoag's creations.  The forms in the present show seen collectively represent our admiration for fine craftsmanship, while also being very poetic in acknowledgment of their artistic state of being.  There is also a bit of nostalgia in my mind because as a society we are moving away from the hand made, and into an era of  the robot and artificial intelligence.  What will the artists of the future work with and what will their art be like?

A constellation of artworks by Lee Hoag "25 Years"
Dyer Art Center