Thursday, January 19, 2012

Vincent Falsetta: Recent Exhibitions

DG 11-5: Obsessive Worlds
oil on canvas, 60" x 60", 2011
image courtesy of Conduit Gallery

I am most familiar with Vincent Falsetta's paintings such as the one above. However, I am thankful that I recently had the opportunity to view a couple of Falsetta's paintings from 1975 at 500X along with several more recent color study works.  Also, another non-commercial gallery in the same Exposition Park neighborhood of Dallas, The Reading Room, exhibited a collection of index cards that Falsetta uses to sketch and catalog his works in progress.

Falsetta received his BFA at Temple University in 1972, and he earned his MFA at Tyler School of Art, Temple University in 1974.  He began teaching at University of North Texas in 1977 and attained the level of Professor in 1992 and continues to this day.  Falsetta is an alumni of the 500X artist collective, and he has been "teacher" of many of my art friends including Jessica McCambly and Charlotte Smith.  Jessica McCambly has included Falsetta in the exhibition she has curated Big and Bright, and Vincent will be giving an artist talk at the exhibit on January 26, 2012.

Sarah Hamilton curated Falsetta into the exhibition she conceived and brought to fruition at the Art Museum of Southeast Texas in 2011 titled Obsessive Worlds. In the catalog for the exhibition we read Falsetta telling us about the title of the painting shown above:
"My most recent painting DG 11-5: Obsessive Worlds was conceived and made for the Obsessive Worlds exhibition. I do not normally title paintings beyond my cataloguing system title, but I did ths time because the title of the exhibition was appropriate to the title of the painting."

Falsetta's system of cataloging his works involves the use of index cards, a process he has employed since the 1980s. These were on view at The Reading Room:

These cards give us an intimate view into the mind and process of the artist.  We find notes that tell us the music he listened to at that moment.  We see little sketches and color charts as he works through his process of problem solving.  On card DC 11-1, 2, Jan 2011, we read, "month later 2010  idea abandoned// new plans for naples yellow pt w/ new questions" then there is a list of questions which seem as abstract as one of his paintings.  Another note on the same card states "Martha responded well to the circular form". Martha is his wife.  On card DG 11-5, 1, June-July 2011,Obsessive Worlds, we find this among the various didactic notes, "Dedicated to Martha, Mario, Trisa, Xander & Doug". A dedication to his family.

These works were not for sale, nor should they ever be.  The purpose of The Reading Room is to explore the intersection of written word and visual images.  And for that, I'd say The Index Cards was a great success.

A few blocks over we were presented with yet more of Falsetta's works at 500X.

Sound Wave Series #7, acrylic on paper, 22.75" x 30.25", 1975

detail of Sound Wave Series #7

Color Studies, 2007 - 2011, oil on museum board, various dimensions

These recent exhibitions of Vincent Falsetta's works afforded me deeper insight to the man I know of as "abstract painter".  I'm very pleased to have gained this understanding of the man whom others that I know refer to as "great teacher" and "husband" and who is also known as "dad".

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