The show’s title, Holding The Center, may refer more to the artist than specifically to his work. As the artist notes, “…each work signifies how there are many vantage points with which to investigate our circumstances should we have the courage to do so..”. Baer’s use of painting to focus on growth and healing is not unusual in art but the intensity and directed discipline with which he pursues it is remarkable. He may, indeed, have found a “center” in these paintings, one which has condensed in lively variations throughout the collection.
In his third show with the gallery, Chris Baer continues an arc of exploration and authenticity. His marks are more sure, his colors more vivid and his compositions more effused with inner life. The artist enjoys making a body of work for each of his shows in order to allow the work to coalesce around an idea or set of ideas. In this case the group of paintings that is, “Holding The Center”, seems even more vibrant seen as a body of work, displayed in an exhibition. For us, it was impossible to look at this work and not think back on the work of Mark Rothko, for the overall surfaces, and Wassily Kandinsky, for his use of shapes and lines within his abstractions. Despite parallels to these icons of the past, Baer is an artist whose sight is set firmly on the future and whose practice is distinctly centered in the present.
“If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision wherever it takes him… We must never forget that art is not a form of propaganda; it is a form of truth.” ~ John F. Kennedy
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Addison/Ripley Fine Art is located at 1670 Wisconsin Avenue NW. For further information and images please contact Ms. Romy Silverstein at 202-338-5180 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org