Mat Tomezsko / Gregory Coates / Leora Brecher
November 10, 2018 - January 5, 2019
NoBA Artspaces, Bala Cynwyd, PA
Working in disparate mediums, all three artists in “CORE” work with bold, elemental, geometric shapes – circles, squares, sharp angles, crosses – as the basis of their compositions. These elemental shapes might be foundational, as with Gregory Coates’ minimalist circular and square panels; they might appear as content, as with Mat Tomezsko’s letters and numbers presented as abstracted shapes (X, O, N, W, 1); or they might form the literal core around which form grows, as in Leora Brecher’s earthenware bodies formed from ringed coils that are joined together with sharp angles. Each of these artists also works with strong, simplified colors – primaries, blacks, and whites – that speak to the "core" properties of their work.
Though the work of Tomezsko, Coates, and Brecher shares formal relationships, each artist’s goals, inspirations, and final projects are quite distinct from one another. Brecher is deeply influenced by forms and objects in the natural world – shells, pods, fossils, bones – as well as the human figure. She does not replicate these natural forms, but rather, alludes to and responds to them in her abstract sculptures that accentuate the inherent qualities of purity, simplicity, and grace. Coates’ assemblages incorporating unexpected materials such as feathers, textiles, and scrub brushes provide a subtle undercurrent of social implication. Manual labor, grief, and racial identity are quietly evoked in compositions that might at first appear as pure, minimalist abstraction, but emerge nonetheless from lived experience. Tomezsko explores relationships between visual art and poetry in his layered and textured abstract paintings. From letters, words, and sentences to coherent bodies of written work, he deconstructs (and reconstructs) language in an exploration of how it carries meaning, both visually and conceptually.