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Wa“n“s“ fen

06 SEPT — 05 OCT 2014

essay by Robert C.  Morgan

WOODSTOCK ARTISTS ASSOCIATION & MUSEUM
28 TINKER STREET | ...
MYSTERIES BETWEEN THE WALLS

Recent Paintings by Randall Schmit
Robert C.  Morgan

I have been looking at Randall Schmit’s...
Pierre and Balthazar Klossowski in the late twentieth century.  The fact is that few
artists today are capable of retainin...
on the right side of a wall holds an elegant demeanor while dressed for the
atomic age.  The wall separates the figure from...
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'Mysteries Between The Walls' | Essay by Robert C. Morgan

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'RANDALL SCHMIT: Sans Serif' | Woodstock Artists Assoc & Museum
Solo Exhibition of New Paintings by Randall Schmit, 2014

“Randall Schmit's paintings often pose existential questions that are both metaphorical and
openly psychological...few artists today are capable of retaining the kind of eccentric beauty, confessional poetics, and sheer visual power that characterizes the work of Randall Schmit.” — Robert C. Morgan

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'Mysteries Between The Walls' | Essay by Robert C. Morgan

  1. 1. Wa“n“s“ fen 06 SEPT — 05 OCT 2014 essay by Robert C. Morgan WOODSTOCK ARTISTS ASSOCIATION & MUSEUM 28 TINKER STREET | WOODSTOCK | NEW YORK
  2. 2. MYSTERIES BETWEEN THE WALLS Recent Paintings by Randall Schmit Robert C. Morgan I have been looking at Randall Schmit’s paintings for twenty-five years and have never grown tired of them. They continue to evoke mysteries unknown in works by other painters at large today. To find anything comparable, I am compelled to look to the past. My first thought recalls the strange, deftly harrowing, erotic paintings by the Swiss artist Henry Fuseli from the late eighteenth/ early nineteenth century. Another would be the suspenseful and obsessive imagery put forth by F3 ~ Li A Table Breathes, 2014; 62.25 x 40.75 inches; oil, acrylic and marker on gessoed canvas
  3. 3. Pierre and Balthazar Klossowski in the late twentieth century. The fact is that few artists today are capable of retaining the kind of eccentric beauty, confessional poetics, and sheer visual power that characterizes the work of Randall Schmit. The recent paintings in this exhibition carry a sense of irony and the absurd. Two works, in particular, A Table Breathes and The Guest (both 2014), combine the artist’s knack for expressionism with a propensity for what is surreal. His abstract figures are as much physical as they are mental; as much body, as they are mind. Schmit synthesizes these antipodal tendencies in a way that reinforces a feeling of estrangement. For example, in A Table Breathes, an upright figure 4 3 7 ‘I 7 f‘‘ I I . ..1I: “1‘ . , _ The Guest, 2014; 62.25 X 40.75 inches; oil, acrylic and marker on gessoed canvas
  4. 4. on the right side of a wall holds an elegant demeanor while dressed for the atomic age. The wall separates the figure from an eerie spatial disruption on the opposite side where a mutated creature clings sideways. On a small table below, a withering plant has gone berserk and appears in desperate need of revival. In The Guest, a solitary androgynous figure gives rapt attention to a red diving board in the lower foreground of the painting. One speculates as to whether the “guest” will perform a dive or some other raucous antic. It is not clear what will happen or how the plot will unfold. “Guest” suggests an unruly, mysterious aura related to some type of performance within a dreamscape cluttered with partitioned rooms. Randall Schmit’s paintings often pose existential questions that are both metaphorical and openly psychological. They are allegories that reinforce our. belief in the mystery of life and in the loss of innocence as felt in our earliest childhood dreams. In the virtual moment of the cell phone and the laptop, these highly imaginative paintings serve as an antidote. They send a vital message that we cannot ignore the internal realities of how we impact one another no matter how abstract our world becomes. Robert C. ll/ Iorgan, August 2014 WAAlV WOODSTOCK ARTISTS ASSOCIATION & M U S E U M Made possible in part by grants from the Adolph & Esther Gotllieb Foundation the Berkshire-Taconic Foundation

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