Imaginary Arms opens Saturday

Joseph O'Neal, joan of arc, 27.5" x 64" acrylic, chalk on found wood

They say it might snow again this weekend. I am so over this weather. Come in out of the cold, and don’t miss , Imaginary Arms, an exhibition of paintings, sculpture and photography opening Saturday at ARCH Collective NYC, 390-400 Troutman St. The show features bluetan art collective members Joseph O’Neal and recent addition Joe Strasser, along with Clark Russell, Grover Watts and Jeremy McDaniel. Rumor has it, the the avant-garde pirate Alex Chaplin, might show a secret installation.

Joseph O’Neal claims North Carolina as his lifelong home, but resides in Brooklyn. Critics say his work “creates a transcendental dialogue through a system driven by the archaic. Symbols, phonetics, and imagery come descendent from a past that, in the words of Motherwell, ‘…could only have been conceived of at present.” According to O’Neal,

“The work consists of two variables: the problem and the resolution. Both variables are present in the end result, like the shaking of hands at a peace treaty. The handshake dissolves my relevancy.”

Jeremy McDaniel is a sculptor and installation artist from Atlanta. A military school dropout, he feels his art is imperative to his discipline.

Joe Strasser worked often with bluetan, and recently fell in to the ranks. If an artist is influenced by his surroundings, The now Brooklyn based Strasser has a lot to go on; the suburbs of New Jersey, a van on a Hawaiian beach, a campground in Woodstock, to Miami, Fl. Of his work, he said,

“ It has taken me over 20 years to completely paint what I want. My work is mostly about using found material and placing it in a new context and giving it new life. This creates a certain kind of poetry with the found detritus. I also believe sex and death should always be present in a piece…”

The photography of Grover Watts is a must see.  Hailing from New Jersey, he take photos that show an understanding of his subjects, and an attention to the aesthetic.

Clark Russell is a sculptor based out of Vermont. He has created artwork for 25 years, and boasts exhibitions in his hometown of St. Louis, Burlington,  as well as here in NYC.

Dr. Alex Chaplin is well respected in the creative community as an artist, riverboat gambler, and bar fighter.  Imaginary Arms will be the first time Chaplin has presented his work in the United States in over a decade. According to O’Neal, it all started in October 2010 when curators Maxime Demetrio and Jason Jensen received a box from the great barrier reef with Dr. Chaplin’s name adorning the top left corner. The contents were two Egyptian healing tablets, a drawing of Sponge Bob, and his wishes and intent to exhibit LSD for the New World.

Seriously, don’t miss this show! You’ll regret for the rest of your life. The exhibition opens at 6pm and goes to 11pm. ARCH Collective is located at the Jefferson Stop on the L Train, Directly behind North East Kingdom, on the corner of Wyckoff an d Troutman.

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