Fine Art Notebook™

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‘Pop-up’ show reveals health of area contemporary art scene

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Jackie Tufford

Artist Jackie Tufford stands amidst work from her series, "She Wore Wire Dresses," some of which are also used in her performance work.

The contemporary art scene in Palm Beach County may not contain as much of the risqué or emergent as can be found in our flashy neighbor to the south, Miami Beach — and we really needn’t be jealous; after all, we have old money — but there is a steady undertow of the new pushing towards the surface, and slowly (and I do mean slowly) beating down the fine art-and-antique image and recasting Palm Beach as a stylish hub for new art.

We’ve seen it most recently with the success of the Art Palm Beach fair, and alternative art spaces, such as the Mordes’s Whitespace Gallery. Elsewhere, the market for contemporary art has escalated to the point of absurdity. So, you couldn’t really think Palm Beach art collectors would be left out of the fray. It’s just that things move rather slowly here under the royal palms.

Yet, whether or not there’s interest, there can’t be movement or energy in art without the presence of working artists and Saturday night’s opening reception for Contemporary Art Pop Up illustrated that there is a vital group of them here and that they’re doing work that merits attention. Unfortunately, gallery and exhibition space is still lacking. So, led by the efforts of Turkish-born artist Sibel Kocabasi, a group of 18 artists mounted a “pop-up” exhibit at an alternative space on PGA Boulevard in Palm Beach Gardens.

The show is a success, and Saturday night’s reception guests felt as though they could’ve been in Miami or New York City. The exhibiting artists are Alette Simmons Jimenez, Amy Gross, Carolyn Sickles, Dan Leahy, Freddy Jouwayed, Isabel Gouveia, Jacek Gancarz, Jackie Tufford, Jacques De Beaufort, Maxine Spector, Nancy San Pedro, Nune Asatryan, Sam Perry, Sarah Knudtson, Sibel Kocabasi, Skip Measelle, Stephan Tugrul and Ryan Toth.

Read the full story at Palm Beach ArtsPaper.

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