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Art

Torey Thornton’s paintings are massive and optically gripping. Biomorphic shapes meet angular geometric blocks of color, resulting in forms that border on incoherence. Either his paintings refuse to look like anything at all, or what they look like keeps shifting the longer you stare at them. More often they do both at once. Blurring the lines between pure abstraction and…

Art

Torey Thornton isn’t yet a household name, but he’s well on his way. The 26-year-old Brooklyn-based artist has been steadily building buzz in the art world for his polyglot paintings, which distill a broad range of influences from street graffiti to art history into alluring compositions of form and color that are proving irresistible to collectors. After a series of inc…

Art

After decades of exhibitions, books and dinner table discussions about the artistic and literary heyday of the University at Buffalo in the 1960s and ’70s, certain names are chiseled into the city’s cultural consciousness like saints on the wall of a Gothic cathedral: Charles Olson. John Barth. Robert Creeley. Leslie Fiedler.But one name that doesn’t show up much in the on…

Art

The first rule of Paint Nite is not to be intimidated by Paint Nite. The second rule of Paint Nite is not to dip your paintbrush into your Pinot Grigio. And that’s about it for rules. The hugely popular group painting and drinking franchise, which launched in Buffalo last April and runs almost every night in bars and restaurants throughout Erie and Niagara counties, is …

Art

Watercolor painter Charles E. Burchfield, at his best, was a conduit through which nature spoke. He carted his easel and brushes and paints into the wilds of West Seneca, peered into the woods for long stretches and absorbed everything about the scene: The sounds of birds and crickets, the way sunlight broke through clouds and spilled across the leaves of trees, even the …

Art

Anselm Kiefer has a thing for ruins. And the acclaimed German painter, who visited Albright-Knox Art Gallery yesterday for a rare public appearance on this continent, found plenty of ruins to revel in during his brief time here. Before the talk, Kiefer took an escorted trip through Silo City, the post-industrial complex of grain elevators and rusting structures that has …

Art

Buffalo painter Amanda Besl popped onto the local artistic radar almost a decade ago, with a series of small-scale paintings of teenage girls that caught the awkward beauty of her subjects’ age and presaged our national obsession with the digital selfie. She continued in this vein until a couple of years ago, gradually expanding her subject matter to include girls with hor…

Art

The recent work of Coni Minneci, best known for her series of still-life paintings representing other female artists throughout history, is the subject of a 10-year retrospective running through Oct. 12 in the Kenan Center (433 Locust St., Lockport). Minneci’s popular and career-defining series “A to Z: An Historical Survey of Women Artists,” is the focal point of the exh…

Art

Felice Koenig builds her paintings up dot by dot, dab by dab, amassing little multicolored mounts of paint that look like thousands of reptilian eyes gazing out at you from the canvas. It’s a meditative process for her, during which she reflects on the ideas that pulse through her work – ideas about death and regeneration, of the ecologies of tide pools or the growth of h…

Art

Because you haven’t read enough about Aretha Franklin’s visit to Western New York, here’s a story from local watercolor painter Jody Ziehm, whose years-long quest to give her 2009 watercolor portrait to the singer finally succeeded on Tuesday afternoon: While watching the inauguration of Barack Obama in 2009, Ziehm was struck by Franklin’s performance of “America,” which …