In a more than 70 year career as an artist, John Wissemann has explored many varied themes. “My subject is the history of art,” he says. But if it is art history it is seen with a working artist’s eye, not the eye of an academic or historian.
John’s latest in colored pencil is informed by his lifelong study and deep knowledge of many various traditions and cultures of art. From cave paintings to the great classic modernists, Matisse, Kandinsky, deKooning, Stuart Davis, Italian baroque sculpture, Japanese Ukiyo-e prints, Balinese puppets, Indian sculpture, African carvings and fabrics. All of these find their way directly or obliquely into his work.
His new drawings are largely abstract but use elements with strong natural reference. They are celebratory in feeling whether he is using floral shapes to evoke the exuberance of spring or strong angular shapes to harness the energy of summer color. In fact, explosion seems to be the right word for these drawings. A blast of shapes turn into a cascade of fluttering confetti, that leave a scent and after image of the experience. They are truly small miracles by a marvelous mind.
Gold/Smith Gallery is proud to present “Small Miracles,” the newest works of John Wissemann from July 4-30. There will be an artist’s reception on Saturday, July 13 at the gallery from 4 to 6 p.m. The Gold/Smith gallery is at 8 McKown Street, Boothbay Harbor and can be reached at 633-6252 for more information or at www.goldsmithgallery.net.