This is the full review by Joanne Silver of my January 2013 show at Arden Gallery. It was published in the May 2013 issue of ART NEWS (page 106) but there is no online link directly to it. "With their orderly arrangements of book spines, cut-up paintings, patinated metal, and other recycled objects, the 15 mixed-media-on-panel works in Nancy Natale's exhibition 'The Resonance of Time' resembled jazzy brick walls, mortared by colored encaustic wax. These artworks dazzled with color, from the pinks (and Pink Panther memorabilia) of 'Symphonie Fantastique' (2012) and the undersea blues of 'A Novel by George' (2012) to the more syncopated hues of 'Mystic Vikings' (2012). Hammered tacks added to the handmade feel of the compositions. The tacks' dotted rhythms suggested musical notes, inserted to accompany the collaged slices of sheet music, album covers, and books about composers. Lined up in careful rows, the hardware also recalled stitches, harnessing the lush geometries of pieced quilts. The paintings' titles capture the disjunctions and coincidences lurking within their borders. Among the poly-chromatic stacks of rectangles in 'Mystic Vikings,' for example, the spine of a Landmark book on the Vikings lies on its side, as does another from a volume about mystics. The multiple visual relationships contained within each work--juxtapositions of color, pattern, and texture--allow viewers to discover personal meanings and associations. A sliver of copper or an album cover might call to mind a particular place. Or the eclectic scraps might simply exist as a 'symphonie fantastique' of their own, a medley of diverse elements brought into unison. Awash in deep reds, 'This American Time' (2012) contains multitudes--to borrow Walt Whitman's words. In it, various magazines from different eras (including TIME), a POPULAR MECHANICS encyclopedia, and slices of assorted paintings occupy a quasi-architectural framework of verticals and horizontals. If their individual ingredients have become worn with age, Natale's completed constructions have gained vitality from time's visible residue."
The full review, published on January 15, 2013, is quoted below. "With their luxuriant tones, Nancy Natale’s mixed-media encaustic works at Arden Gallery have something in common with Risoli’s paintings, although they’re more contemplative and less exuberantly freaky." "Natale nails onto a panel long rows of ephemera — book spines, snippets of musical notation, handwritten notes, shreds of album covers — along with slats of copper, rubber, and more. They jitter over the surface along a given theme — “Symphonie Fantastique,” for instance, celebrates Henry Mancini’s theme to the “Pink Panther” movies — and she selectively coats them in pigmented wax. Pink, in this case." "The Pink Panther piece is light and fun, but Natale goes deeper in larger works, such as the ruby-toned “This American Time,” one of the rare pieces here that features vertical as well as horizontal slats. The verticals give the piece a syncopated rhythm. The result is nearly musical." "The content includes red-mottled strips of handwriting, white slots with black decorative and gestural loops, and an ad declaring, “These men are building lifetime businesses!” There’s something ruminative about all these elements together. They may not seem connected, but they coalesce into something fervent, intimate, and hopeful."
In her well-known art blog, Joanne writes about my solo show at Arden Gallery, Boston. "Nancy Natale, an artist due for some serious attention, has the window at Arden Gallery this month. Her show, The Resonance of Time, is up through January 28. Metaphorically and physically, Natale pieces together disparate elements--cultural and industrial remnants: book spines, metal snippets, painting strips--into a mashup of memory and emotion. The work is from her Running Stitch series, but it's not stitched. Everything is held together with tacks in a kind of polyrhythmic syncopation to the horizontally placed elements. You might think of quilts or stained glass, or maybe the organization of information when your computer is in the process of defragmenting. It's all there visually. Natale invites you to make sense of it on your own terms." 1/15/2013
Excerpt from the post in Boston Art Review: "Natale's work in particular arranges tones of color into a unified key, usually through a limited range of hue or value in each piece. To put it simply, you could say "the red one" and we'd know what you mean, but there's a wealth of complexity forming that red. Piet Mondrian comes to mind, though the antecedent I see most strongly is the facade of Le Corbusier's Cité Radieuse. But any references you might see here will almost certainly be Modernist, and that helps to draw us towards these pieces."
This video shows the exhibition installation of "Exponential: 4 Artists Explore Infinity," an exhibition of work by Catherine Carter, Sand T. Kalloch, Nancy Natale and Jeanne Williamson at Mt. Ida College, Newton, Mass., January 29 - March 2, 2013. Catherine Carter is also the exhibition's curator.
Excerpts from the August 13, 2012 review of my solo show at R & F Paints, Kingston, New York "Collaged from magazines, children’s books and other print sources and embellished with applications of tinted encaustic, the works resemble aerial views from a tilting jet. It’s a map of babble that’s loud but meaningless, exuberant but vacant, as if visual media has run amok, swallowing whole cities. A virtual world turned inside out with nothing left to refer to except itself...." "Natale’s assemblages are quilt-like in their construction, but not in sensibility. In their evocations of black leather andTimes Square, clubs and marquees, the blues and television they are a millennium jump away from the quilting bee...." 8/13/2012
Nancy Natale at Arden Gallery If Nancy Natale is not known to the New York art world she should be. Her small solo show at Arden Gallery on Newbury Street is from a series of recent works called Running Stitch. There’s no thread in these constructed paintings, however. Composed of castoff book parts, rubber strips, metal and other materials, they have been laid out and tacked into assemblages that are equal parts formal beauty and polyrhythmic muscle. If I wanted to be flip I would say that Natale’s work is the love child of Lee Bontecou and El Anatsui. But that would be unfair to an artist who has forged a vision that is quite her own. Artist info here. The exhibition is up through July 30.