Official BMA Text: This summer The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) presents a variety of luminescent and textured paintings from Baltimore-based artist Seth Adelsberger. On view in the Contemporary Wing from June 29 – November 2, 2014, Front Room: Seth Adelsberger features nearly a dozen works produced over the past five years that demonstrate the artist’s innovative approaches to painting.
Adelsberger’s experimentation with materials and techniques recalls the painterly investigations undertaken by artists ranging from Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning to Morris Louis and Frank Stella. He creates his Submersion Paintings, in intense blues and saturated magentas, by staining untreated canvases with rich washes of acrylic paint before applying a thick layer of gesso. In his hands, this viscous white paint, normally used as a base coat, is unorthodoxly sandwiched in between the initial stained layers and a final wash of color, adding texture and dynamic form.
In his Border Paintings, the artist treats a painting’s surface as material to be cut away, leaving only a painted and wrapped edge to frame the void where one would expect to find the most important part of a picture. In other pieces, carpet fragments replace paint and canvas as the media from which a ‘painting’ is made. For these works, Adelsberger digitally manipulates an image of an abstract carpet design to heighten the carpet’s pile and pattern before printing the results onto rectangles of actual carpet. He then displays the resulting works in meticulously fabricated cases.
Adelsberger (American, born 1979) is the co-Founding Director of Nudashank Gallery, which has exhibited work by emerging artists, many from Baltimore’s vibrant arts community. His own work has been featured in group and solo exhibitions across the country. In 2008, he received the top award for painting from the Maryland State Arts Council. He received his BSA in Fine Arts from Towson University in 2002, and is a native of Emmitsburg, Maryland.
The exhibition is organized by Curator of Contemporary Art Kristen Hileman.