Posts Tagged ‘Dianne Tanzer Gallery


Day 313: Falling Towards the Sky, by Becc Orszag

Becc Orszag Falling Towards the Sky 2012

Day 313: Falling Towards the Sky, by Becc Orszag

Becc Orszag’s large-scale charcoal drawing, Falling Towards the Sky (2012) was a stand-out work at the recent NotFair, a satellite exhibition of the Melbourne Art Fair 2012. It was a pleasure seeing it again at Dianne Tanzer Gallery, accompanied by a small display of other drawings by this undoubtedly gifted and highly imaginative artist.

Orszag’s athletic figure twirls in an ambiguous space, and involuntarily calls to mind Ring Gymnast I (1911) by the Swedish artist Eugene Jansson (1862-1915) in the collection of the National Gallery of Victoria [], who is similarly engaged in a seemingly impossible acrobatic mid-air feat.

Nude but for small pair of briefs, his rippling musculature, flailing arms, and inward-pointing toes relate the acrobat’s total concentration on the correct execution of his perilous routine. The strategic placement of his figure almost three quarters up from the lower margin of the drawing imparts the feeling of weightlessness and of the speed of his breathtaking ascent. The ghost-like rocky outcrops in the background of the drawing simultaneously remind the viewer of the increasingly perilous distance from the ground of this gravity-defying latter-day wingless Icarus.

[© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg 2012; where applicable, images are courtesy of the artists and their galleries.]


Day 310: Hazel, by Natasha Bieniek

Natasha Bieniek Hazel 2012

Day 310: Hazel, by Natasha Bieniek

At first glance, Natasha Bieniek’s technical abilities cannot be faulted. Her exquisite miniature oil on wood creations, which do not exceed but a few inches in size, are executed with tiniest implements in smooth, barely perceptible brushstrokes. Every eyelash, strands of hair, intricate designs of draperies and the delicate stitching of embroideries are painstakingly depicted in minute detail.  The preference for subtle pastel tones is pleasing to the eye, and the glossy sheen of silks and satins is conveyed with great aplomb.

However, the matte softness of skin tones eludes her. This is arguably due to the fact that her works appear to be painted from photographs, and, as the result, most objects within the composition acquire a near-uniform waxy glow. The sheer banality of her pictures is also disappointing, as seemingly little effort or discernment goes into the process of posing and directing her uniformly expressionless models.

In this sense, Hazel (2012) is one of the stand-outs in the exhibition, as the fractured contours of the body and the crumpled sheet with which the model is covering her face suggest a modicum of emotional involvement between the artist and her subject. It is also a rare instance of the artist’s effort to offer her audience a psychological insight into the women she portrays, as we ponder and contemplate the emotional state of the young model.

[© Eugene Barilo von Reisberg 2012; where applicable, images are courtesy of the artists and their galleries.]

Eugene Barilo v. Reisberg

April 2019
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