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As 2013 comes to a close, local art spaces come alive with fantastic exhibitions

ART: The end is the beginning 

As 2013 comes to a close, local art spaces come alive with fantastic exhibitions

Even though autumn heralds the close of the year, and the death, decay, or otherwise slumberfest of nature, to me the crisp, fresh air always feels like a beginning. This probably comes in part from our everlasting association of autumn with going back to school. Now that school is back in session, many of the gallery spaces that hibernated during the warmer months are plumping up the arts calendar, their own offerings joining the year-round spaces. Here are a dozen don't-miss-'em shows taking place between now and the springtime, along with information (where available) about other shows hosted by each of the selected venues.

Some details are still being ironed out, so check back with the galleries as time moves forward. Admission to the galleries, museums, and arts centers is free unless otherwise specified.

Remember, this is just a sampling. There are countless more exhibitions coming to area galleries. Check City Newspaper every Wednesday or keep up with our searchable online calendar at rochestercitynewspaper.com.

1975 Gallery (89 Charlotte St.) will present "VOLO CALVARIAM: 1975's Five Year Anniversary" on Saturday, October 5. The title of the exhibition is Latin for, "I want your skull," and each artwork will have a skull incorporated into it. The line-up of more than 60 artists features many of this past year's Wall\Therapy participants, including Bile, Change, Adam Francey, Jessie and Katey, Mike Ming, Mr. Prvrt, Sarah C. Rutherford, St. Monci, Lea Rizzo, Siloette, and Thievin' Stephen. The opening reception will be held October 5 7-10 p.m., and the show continues through November 2. 1975 Galley is currently showing "Adventures in Technicolor by St. Monci" through September 28. The space is open Wednesday-Friday noon-8 p.m., and Saturday-Sunday noon-5 p.m. For more information, call 466-4278 or visit facebook.com/1975ish.

Axom Gallery & Exhibition Space (176 Anderson Ave., Suite C) will host "Shamanisms: New Ceramic Sculpture by Bill Stewart" from January 15 to February 22. Bill Stewart's monolithic figurative work is playful with a dash of social sarcasm, and ranges from expressive animal/human hybrids to caricatured religious leaders. His sculptures are typically brightly colored, and totem-esque, but those included in this show are matte black, anthropomorphic figures that blend archetypes with contemporary culture. An artist reception will be held on Saturday, January 18, 5-8 p.m. Axom's hours are Wednesday-Saturday noon-5 p.m. and by appointment. Learn more by calling 232-6030 x22 or visiting axomgallery.com.

Through October 12, "Transmutations: Photographic Works by Carl Chiarenza" is showing concurrently at Axom Gallery and Spectrum Gallery at Lumiere Photo (100 College Ave.). The dual exhibition of large-scale, black-and-white photography is held in honor of the artist's 78th birthday. "Transmutations" is a select body of work curated by photo historian Robert Hirsch that chronicles Chiarenza's work from 1979, when he shifted from classic documentary-style photography to creating images entirely within his studio by making collages and shooting them with Polaroid-type film. Chiarenza's dimensional abstract works shimmer with mystery, suggest landscapes and figures, and leave plenty of room for the viewer to form individual interpretations of what is being seen. Spectrum's hours are Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Saturday 10 a.m.-2 p.m. For more information, call 461-4447, or visit spectrumgalleryroc.com.

On January 28, 2014, Tower Fine Arts Center Gallery at SUNY Brockport (350 New Campus Drive, Brockport) will open two intriguing exhibits, to be shown concurrently through February 23. "Andrew Au: Life Industries" is a series of detailed paintings, prints, sculpture, and a mockumentary about the inner workings of Life Industries, an imaginary industrial plant that manufactures and markets living things, using code that explains a sequence of events to make the organism viable. "Amy Cheng: Irrational Exuberance" brings together a new series of intricate, ornamental paintings that are loosely inspired by the mandala, the cosmos, cells, lace, brocade, and more wheels of geometric and organic patterning. A reception for both shows will be held on Friday, January 31, 4-6 p.m. Gallery hours are Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sunday 1-4 p.m. For more information, call 395-2805 or visit brockport.edu/finearts.

The Firehouse Gallery at Genesee Pottery (Genesee Center for the Arts and Education, 713 Monroe Ave.) is currently showing "History in the Making VIII" through November 3. The annual exhibit showcases ceramic work from emerging artists to veteran traditionalists from around the country, juxtaposing historic and contemporary ideas. Jean Schallenbarger, associate professor at RIT's School for American Crafts, is the guest juror for the show. The Genesee Center's annual "WinterCraft" show and sale will take place November 15-December 21. The gallery's hours are Monday-Wednesday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Saturday noon-5 p.m. Also at Genesee Center, the Community Darkroom Galleries will host "Social Reportage: Raw," a series of photographic essays by Arleen Hodge and students, touching on poverty, homelessness and social issues in the urban setting. The exhibit runs Friday, September 20, through November 2. A reception will be held September 20, 7-9 p.m. Next up, a Community Darkroom Monitors Exhibit will be held November 8-January 10. Community Darkroom hours are Monday 9 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Tuesday-Thursday 9 a.m-6:30 p.m., Friday noon-5 p.m., and Saturday 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. For more information, call 244 -1730 or visit geneseearts.org.

George Eastman House International Museum of Photography and Film will host two concurrent shows October 26-January 12 to celebrate space photography and explore the space of the human imagination. "The History of Space Photography" will showcase a variety of astronomical photographs, from the earliest black-and-white photographs of the moon, solar eclipses, and stars, through the most recent color images of the universe taken by space telescopes. As a perfect pairing to this show, the museum's Brackett-Clark Gallery will feature "Astro-Visions," a science-meets-science-fiction collection of pre-photography illustrations, 20th-century film stills, and contemporary photographs gathered together to demonstrate how scientists, filmmakers, and artists have expressed their visions of outer space. George Eastman House is open Tuesday-Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission is $5-$12, and free to members and children ages 12 and younger. For more information, call 271-3361, or visit eastmanhouse.org.

Through September 29, Hartnett Gallery (Wilson Commons, University of Rochester River Campus) will host video installations by South African artist, filmmaker, and director William Kentridge, who will be a distinguished visitor at the University of Rochester for a series of talks and special events. Kentridge's "7 Fragments for George Meliès," "Day for Night," and "Journey to the Moon" will be continuously screened in the gallery during open hours: Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m.-7 p.m., and Saturday-Sunday noon-5 p.m. Kentridge's feature-length film of experimental animation, "Drawings for Projections," will be screened Wednesday, September 18, at 8 p.m. at the Dryden Theatre. A short artist's talk will precede the screening and a Q&A will follow. For more information, visit eastmanhouse.org/events. On Thursday, September 19, Kentridge will be present at 9:30 a.m. in the lobby of Todd Theatre (UR River Campus) to discuss his decades-long career as a director of theater and opera. Also on Thursday at 1:30 p.m., Kentridge will be part of a panel discussion on his work in visual arts and film, with an emphasis on its South African context in the Gowen Room (Wilson Commons). And at 4 p.m., the artist will give a lecture titled, "Everyone Their Own Projector" in the Hawkins-Carlson Room (Rush Rhees Library, UR River Campus). For more information, visit blogs.rochester.edu/hartnett and rochester.edu/news.

For centuries, Japanese artists have excelled at printmaking, and continue to develop the medium beyond imaginative expectations. The Memorial Art Gallery (500 University Ave.) will host "Redefining the Multiple: 13 Contemporary Japanese Printmakers" January 19-March 16 in the Grand Gallery. The history, theory, and continuing popularity of print media in Japan have made printmaking a major course of study in universities and art schools there. This exhibit will showcase 13 artists, ranging in age from their mid-20s to mid-60s, whose individual practice has transitioned into unique forms that, while still making use of tools and techniques of the printmaker, are often associated with sculpture, painting, and digital media. The imagery in their work ranges from formal abstraction to iterations of traditional Japanese cultural images. A member's opening party will take place January 18; watch the web for further updates. Among exhibits held at MAG this year are "Memory Theatre 2013" (October 9-December 29), "Matisse as Printmaker: Works from the Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation" (April 6-June 8), and The 6th Rochester Biennial (July 13-September 21). MAG's hours are Wednesday-Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m., and Thursday 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Admission is $5-$12 except Thursday nights, when it is half-price. For more information, call 276-8900 or visit mag.rochester.edu.

Monroe Community College's Mercer Gallery (1000 E. Henrietta Road) will host "Good Work: The Illustration Invitational," January 24-February 21, 2014. The show is curated by renowned illustrator David Cowles (Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, Playboy, People, The Village Voice, The New York Times, Vanity Fair, and many others) and postmodern painter Kathy Calderwood, whose work has been featured in art houses all over the world, and who was part of the Florence Biennale of Contemporary Art in 2011. Fifty-six internationally known illustrators present their favorite illustrations created over the course of their careers. This group will include such talents as Daniel Adel, Terry Allen, Melinda Beck, Guy Billout, Steve Brodner, Philip Burke, Andre Carrilho, Brian Cronin, Jose Cruz, Roger DeMuth, Debbie Drechsler, Milton Glaser, Danny Hellman, Chris Lyons, Mark Matcho, Bob Staake, Nancy Stahl, to name a few. An opening reception will be held Friday, January 24. Mercer Gallery will also host an Alumni Show featuring Chris Mostyn and Rick Nickel (through October 4), Ken Martin Sculpture (October 11-November 8), Luis Alberto Decurgez (November 15-December 14), Belinda Bryce and Kurt Ketchum (February 28-March 28, 2014), Scott Herrmann (April 4-May 2, 2014), and the 38th Annual Student Art Exhibition (May 9-August 15, 2014). Gallery hours are Monday-Thursday 11a.m.-7 p.m., Friday 11 a.m.-4 p.m. For more information, call 292-2021 or visit monroecc.edu/depts/vapa/mercer.

Nazareth College's Arts Center Gallery (4245 East Ave.) will host "Larry Merrill: Tree as Photograph" November 1-December 8. I don't know about you, but admiring the simple beauty and resilience of trees is really, truly good for my serenity. An opening reception will be held Friday, November 1. "In Process: Emerging Artists in Metalsmithing and Jewelry" runs September 27-October 25, and this spring, the gallery will feature "Three Women Show," curated by Elizabeth Lyons (January 24-March 7, 2014), Nazareth College Undergraduate Art Show (March 28-April 18, 2014), Nazareth College Graduate Art Show (April 28-May 12, 2014), and "Shared Spaces 2014" (dates TBA). Gallery hours are Tuesday-Thursday noon-5 p.m., Friday-Saturday noon-8 p.m., and Sunday noon-5 p.m. For more information and to learn about what Nazareth's Colacino Gallery will offer, call 389-5073 or visit artscenter.naz.edu/galleries.

From October 3 through November 10, Rochester Contemporary Art Center (137 East Ave.) will host "signals_now_," the inaugural exhibition for Signal Culture, which is a new experimental-media art center that will be located in Central New York. The new organization aims to provide residencies, resources, and exhibition opportunities in the field of experimental media art. "Some very prominent media artists who will be among our first residents will be featured in 'signals_now_,'" says Debora Bernagozzi, of Signal Culture. This group of artists includes Kristin Lucas, Peer Bode, Joe McKay, and Phillip Stearns. The show opens Thursday, October 3, 6-9 p.m. Rochester Contemporary is open Wednesday-Sunday 1-5 p.m., and Friday 1-10 p.m. Admission is $1, and free to members. For more information, call 461-2222, or visit rochestercontemporary.org.

On Friday, November 8, Visual Studies Workshop (31 Prince St.) will host an opening reception for "Of the Ordinary," an exhibition made up of various projects focused on the political implications of portraiture, and highlighting the various ways in which images are created, distributed, and experienced in a contemporary setting. Many of the projects highlighted in this exhibition employ the method of editing an existing body of images to further investigate their meaning. Among the projects are Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin's "People in Trouble, Laughing, Pushed to the Ground," which reveals hidden elements of photographic prints housed in the Belfast Exposed Archive in Ireland; Alyse Emdur's "Prison Landscapes," a collection of more than 150 photographs of prison inmates representing themselves in front of visiting room backdrops, often painted by inmates; and "Too Hard To Keep," a growing collection of photographs deemed too hard to keep for various reasons sent to Jason Lazarus by many different contributors. On Friday, October 4, ImageOut and VSW will host an opening reception for "ImageArt: i do?!," an exhibition of works from the LGBTQ community that respond to or address the issues surrounding marriage equality. For more information, call 442-8676, or watch vsw.org/calendar.

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