Posts by Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D.

Born and raised in New York City, Dr. Rousseau completed a B.A. in Art History at Hunter College (C.U.N.Y.), and her M.A. and Ph.D. at Columbia University in New York. Prior to coming to the DC area in 2001, she lived and worked as a curator, critic and translator in Santiago de Chile in South America for about three years, and in San Salvador, El Salvador for two in the early 1990s. She was a Guest Professor at the Freie Universität in Berlin, as well as having taught study abroad programs in Italy. Currently, she is Professor Emerita of Art History at Montgomery College. An internationally published scholar of Renaissance and Modern art, she is an active critic and editor. Dr. Rousseau has curated many contemporary art exhibits at venues in the Washington DC region, and she continues to serve on the Public Arts Trust Steering Committee of the AHCMC, as well as the Art Review Panel of the Maryland National Park and Planning Commission for Public Art. Since 2010 she has been a juried member of the prestigious International Association of Art Critics (AICA) for her writing on art.

By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on November 30, 2021

East City Art Reviews—Alma W. Thomas Everything is Beautiful at The Phillips Collection

Coinciding with its centennial anniversary, the Phillips Collection is hosting a retrospective of paintings by Alma W. Thomas. The show is fully contextualized with archival materials and objects.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on October 26, 2021

East City Art Note—Maryanne Pollock Rebirth the Earth

Without a doubt, the most interesting and arresting painting in the current solo exhibit of recent work by Maryanne Pollock is her Rebirth the Earth (2021), also the title of the show. Against a black background that appears cosmic, explosions of aqua, blue and white acrylic burst forward, along with translucent orbs that seem to be in a state of formation.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on October 19, 2021

East City Art Reviews —Clouds, Ice, and Bounty: Dutch and Flemish Paintings at the National Gallery of Art

An exhibition of seventeenth-century Dutch and Flemish paintings acquired by the National Gallery of Art through the Lee and Juliet Folger Fund over the past 25 years is now on view in the Dutch and Flemish Cabinet Galleries there. These spaces aim at emulating the domestic environments for which works like these would have been made, and to provide a sense of this for the contemporary viewer.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on October 4, 2021

East City Artnotes—Wayne Paige Changing Landscapes

Wayne Paige’s current exhibit, Changing Landscapes: The Digital Age, Encroachment, and Eventual Outcomes, aims at exposing the dangers of the lure of the digital to those who have never lived in a world without cell phones and computers.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on September 17, 2021

East City Art Reviews—Anne Marchand Moments of Grace

Eight abstract paintings by DC artist Anne Marchand are now on view at the Silva Gallery. The new exhibition space was the result of a collaboration between Latela Curatorial and the Silva DC, a new apartment development in Adams Morgan opened with the intention of providing new opportunities for local artists in the Washington DC region.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on September 15, 2021

East City Art Reviews—Trawick Prize 2021

The nineteenth iteration of the finalists of the Trawick Prize for Contemporary Art is now on view at Gallery B in Bethesda. The work in this exhibit falls into two distinct categories: reflections on identity and heritage, and meditations on nature and climate change. Of the eight artists exhibited, six fall into the former, with two in the latter.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on August 24, 2021

Remembering Nancy Frankel (1929-2021)

Embodying what she called an “organic geometry,” Nancy Frankel’s sculpture is a testament to the richness of her inspiration, whether it came from the hidden mathematical structures of nature or those inherent in music.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on August 12, 2021

East City Art Reviews—DC Abstraction Shines at Pazo Fine Art

Colors of Confidence, the current exhibit at the relatively new Pazo Fine Art gallery (PFA) in Kensington, MD shows a small but powerful group of ten works by eight DC abstract painters, three of them major names from the Washington Color School: Tom Downing, Howard Mehring and Paul Reed.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on August 2, 2021

East City Art Reviews—9 Artists / 9 Months / 9 Perspectives: Birth of 2020 Visions

Pyramid-Atlantic is hosting an exhibition of the work of nine African-American women artists who participated in a collective project variously titled Project 2020 or 2020 Visions. For it, each conceived an artist’s book that would express her experiences through the difficult and tumultuous times through which we have lived over the past year and a half.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on July 9, 2021

East City Art Reviews—Erik Thor Sandberg’s New Drawings: Art Historical Reflections

A small portfolio of new drawings by painter Erik Thor Sandberg is now available for viewing at CONNERSMITH Gallery. There are only five of them in this group, but they are arresting and memorable both for Sandberg’s amazing draftsmanship and their fascinating iconography.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on June 28, 2021

East City Art Reviews—Three to See at Studio Gallery: Gary Anthes, Carolee Jakes and Harriet Lesser

For their June-July schedule, Studio Gallery is hosting a show of work by photographer Gary Anthes and multi-media artist Carolee Jakes in the upper gallery with new photo transfers by Harriet Lesser stands in the lower gallery space. All three shows address themes of transience, impermanence and the inevitability of change.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on June 15, 2021

East City Art Reviews—The 2021 Bethesda Painting Awards Finalists’ Exhibition

The annual Bethesda Painting Awards have been decided, and the exhibition of selected works by each of the eight finalists is currently at Gallery B in Bethesda. A point of interest this year is the fact that nearly all the paintings in this show are figurative to a greater or lesser degree.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on June 5, 2021

East City Art Reviews—Faith Ringgold Retrospective at Glenstone

The Gallery at Glenstone is the only US venue scheduled for a retrospective exhibition of five decades of work by African-American artist Faith Ringgold. The exhibit provides a unique opportunity to see the trajectory of Ringgold’s work as activist, artist and author seriously engaged in the struggle for African-American civil and women’s rights over her long career.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on May 4, 2021

East City Art Reviews – Poetry and Word Pictures: Ilchi and Rose at Hemphill

Two excellent exhibits currently at Hemphill are clearly intended as two solos, and are in separate spaces in the Gallery. Yet one might wonder why these two artists, whose work seems such a contrast, would be shown at the same time.

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By Claudia Rousseau, Ph.D. on March 11, 2021

East City Art Reviews—Kenneth Victor Young: Exploring Space

This month there are two concurrent exhibitions featuring the later work of Kenneth Victor Young: one at CONNERSMITH, the other at Bethesda Fine Art. It also marks the fourth anniversary of the death of this remarkable but relatively little known Washington DC artist in 2017. At his death, at 83, he had had a career of over fifty years painting, teaching, and designing exhibitions.

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