Introducing…John Geldersma, Chad Manley & Judith Vejvoda

John Geldersma
Chad Manley
Judith Vejvoda

May 7th-29th 2010
Reception: Friday, May 7th, 5-7pm

Group Show

Santa Fe, NM – Chiaroscuro Contemporary Art is pleased to present the work of three new featured artists: John Geldersma, Chad Manley, and Judith Vejvoda. These artists work in the distinct mediums of sculpture, furniture, and photography, respectively, and the work included in the show is eclectic, compelling, and engaging each in its own way. A reception for the artists will be held at the gallery on Friday, May 7 from 5-7pm. Please join us in welcoming these unique new artists to Chiaroscuro. The show will be on view from May 7 through May 29, 2010.

As a sculptor, John Geldersma crafts contemporary polychrome totems, or Spirit Poles that incorporate motifs from various cultures native to Southwestern Louisiana where he lives. Geldersma brings these influences together in a confluence of bold designs that are, at once, fully contemporary even as they harken back to art forms made by cultures steeped in tradition. Although known for his Spirit Poles, Geldersma’s work also draws inspiration from tribal masks, shaman figures, and even landscapes. Having shown his work extensively in Louisiana since the 1960s, Santa Fe is fortunate that this skilled wood carver continues to bring his work to our area. The variegated surfaces of his vibrant poles reveal Geldersma as a skilled painter as well as sculptor. His work, realized through totemic structuring of geometric shapes, has an almost human or animal-like presence.

The furniture of Chad Manley has a stately simplicity that belies his wild designs. From hemispherical end tables to consoles to vessels that show off basic elemental shapes, Manley achieves a perfect balance between function and form. Graceful curves combine with rectangular surfaces to create utilitarian objects that can out “art” all other art in your home. Breathtaking to look at, Manley’s pieces, inspired by natural forms, are the work of a master craftsman. Relying on minimum of materials—steel and mahogany or other types of hardwoods—and nothing else, his fundamentally useful designs are uncomplex yet stunning in their look. In addition to his furniture, several wall hangings will be on display that cements Manley squarely in the category of artist, his work joyfully blurring the lines between furniture and sculpture.

New Mexico photographer Judith Vejvoda presents a body of work shot in Cambodia and Bali. Attracted to the sacred sites in these places, such as Angkor Wat in Cambodia and Lakeside Temple in Bali, Vejvoda captures their mystical, dream-like qualities in infrared black and white photography. These landscape photographs are haunting, showing sculptural and architectural details as though they are as natural a part of the landscape as the trees and lakes surrounding them. Fixing her eye to the dark parts of the forest, Vejvoda’s images elicit a sense of mystery but they also elicit a sense of having arrived at a destination: a place full of secret meaning. These photographs have an otherworldly feel, as though they belong to another time, yet the presence of their subjects seems eternal, calling up archetypal notions of the soul’s journey.