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Silence in the Coral Sea by Dean DeCocker
Dean DeCocker, “Pin Points in the Pacific” (detail), 2005, acrylic paint, graphite, mdf. Carnegie Arts Center, Turlock, CA.

RIVERSIDE, CA.- Riverside Art Museum presents Silence in the Coral Sea, work by Dean DeCocker, in the Bobbie Powell Gallery. Dean DeCocker’s work is part of a continuing series. From the first winged-shaped structures to the current work, he has been exploring his interest in formal elements by transforming flat, two-dimensional surfaces into three-dimensional objects. DeCocker derives much of his inspiration from everyday objects such as mailboxes, aircraft structures, wings and propellers, heavy machinery and architectural works. These objects become conceptual elements, which he transforms first into drawings. Then, via techniques of aircraft construction, DeCocker fabricates objects of inner structures and outer coverings that create volumetric enclosures.

"Meta-Photography" brings together five California artists working with new photographic techniques. They incorporate more traditional practices (shooting pictures with a regular – even non-digital – camera, hand-coloring sections of the image, writing) or what might be called more traditional experiments (photograms produced in the darkroom, collage, photocopy) into their digitally driven manipulations. But they all push the formal, not to mention technical, envelope that currently contains what we think of as "photography." Using her computer’s mouse, Suzanne Adelman [Los Angeles]"draws" parts of landscape photographs into other such images. Exposing photo-sensitive paper to controlled light, in a method going back to Man Ray, Diane Althoff [Oakland] achieves painterly effects with the C-print’s rainbow palette. Straddling photography, drawing, collage and printmaking, Susan Smith Evans [Palm Desert] sets in motion a dreamlike world of shadowy flora and fauna. August Highland [San Diego] is a "visual poet" whose typographic, and purely graphic, investigations have jumped off the computer screen and onto photographic paper. In her wall constructions and free-hanging silk banners Amy Todd [San Francisco] fuses documentary photographs of her family and related images into fluid narratives of memory and loss.

"Meta-Photography" is organized by Peter Frank, Senior Curator at the Riverside Art Museum. Born in New York, where he studied and began his career as an art critic and independent curator, Frank has written many articles, catalogue essays, and books (his latest a monograph on the painter Robert De Niro, Sr. – father of the actor) and has organized exhibitions for such museums and organizations as Germany’s Documenta and New York’s Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. He began visiting California in a professional capacity three decades ago, and relocated here a dozen years later. He currently serves as art critic for Angeleno magazine and the L. A. Weekly. About his appointment to his Riverside Art Museum post, Frank says, "Riverside, and the whole inland region of southern California, is poised on the brink of a demographic and cultural explosion. This is the spirit, the adventure in the natural and social frontiers, I associate with and love about California life. Our art reflects this expansivity, restlessness, and human passion; our audiences know and seek this. It is exciting to work in Riverside at this time, at a newly energized little museum, for what promises to be a smart, hungry, and growing public – local, regional, and ultimately national."

The Riverside Art Museum, located in historic downtown Riverside, occupies a beautiful historic building designed and built by Hearst Castle architect Julia Morgan. The Mission of the Riverside Art Museum is to serve the various communities and diverse populations of the Inland Empire by providing visual art of the finest quality.

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