We hope that “Summer Always Blooms” – and so far so good this year. If you follow the order of flowers blooming in Brooklyn you’ll know that we are in the middle of the peony explosion that happens every year just after the lilacs and just before the roses. Perhaps that’s what was on muralist Ouizi’s mind when she painted this new soft brush portrait of coral charm peonies in Bentonville, Arkansas.
Curated by Charlotte Dutoit of Justkids, the piece coincidences with the new Georgia O’Keeffe exhibition at Crystal Bridges, and you can see that the full pulsating expanse of natural blooms thrills Quizi as much as it did the mother of American modernism.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed being back in Arkansas for this project,” says Ouizi, “and I have heard nothing but positive responses about the mural. I even got to see the dogwoods start to bloom in real life!”
If you are in Bentonville you can see Anne Vieux’s “captivating illusion of a hyper-fluid space” at the Skylight Cinema building.
A psychedelia of this moment, the modulated visual liquid was produced by the artists use of digital copies made of shiny aluminum papers. Printed on vinyl, she transformed this exterior into a trippy grid of lenswork that allows passersby to see fields that instantly challenge imaginations.
Vieux says she enjoys stretching beyond limits of data and physical space, a description analogous for some with cinema itself.
“In this piece, I wanted to disrupt the solid geometries of the architecture with a hyperreal fluid painting placed in the landscape,” she says, and something in the description makes it conversant with the chaos and surrealist quality of US life today.
“I reflected on these ideas in a cultural/political context,” says Vieux, “thinking that a larger takeaway of this piece is that through disrupting and dissolving boundaries we can create a fluid open space where there’s room to unite.”
Now you can see, right?
This project is curated by Charlotte Dutoit of Justkids, and commissioned by Oz Art. The piece is part of ARkanvas.
“It can’t be unity unless everyone is respected equally,” says contemporary artist and occasional muralist Nina Chanel Abney as she talks about her new four panelled installation in Northwest Arkansas.
In bold graphic style and unshaded color shapes Abney has to state the obvious – “Don’t Kill”, because, well, because you have to start somewhere. The peeling back of the initial layers of American racist history began in earnest in 2020 across the country and in the streets. Ground rules for meaningful exchange are slowly, intermittently, painfully, taking form.
“Mull it Over”. That’s the title she has given to the piece that she finished last month along the Bentonville Razorback greenway trail, opposite the recently inaugurated art space The Momentary. It’s a great way to end the year, this year, as the artist continues to find ways to present thorny topics ranging from race, politics, religion, sex, identity, justice, and history using a modern language – complete with its non-sequiturs and jump-cut story-telling.
Organizers include the women-led curator group Justkids with Charlotte Dutoit and the Bentonville art organization OZ Art.