NEW YORK TIMES, SUNDAY, JANUARY 9, 2005 ‘Food for Thought’ Islip Art Museum, 50 Irish Lane, East Islip, sustenance.In Elizabeth Crawford’s two pickle still lifes, the carefully rendered elements take floating collage overlays, anchored by a printed grid, to present different aspects of one subject. A simplified single face peeks(631) 224-5402. Through Jan. 23.Both figuratively and literally, as subject matter and as raw material, things edible preoccupy the 10 artists in this group show.Tracy Miller paints what she calls “piles of guilty pleasure.” Each canvas is a dieter’s nightmare, packed with culinary abundance rendered in thick, creamy paint that mimics the texture of pudding, pastry andSusan Zises’ large-scale studies of fried eggs and oysters also glory in the sensuous quality of lush pigment, while making the abundant food seem strangely unappetizing. Contrast this caloric overload with K. Min’s delicate, translucent pastels, like Proustian evocations of half-eaten sandwiches, doughnuts and other humble fare.Substituting cupcakes for bricks and icing for mortar, Melissa Mudry builds tenuous little monuments to the ephemeral joys of tasty treats. Zhu Wei raises a single yam to iconic status in “Great Sweet Potato,” an oversize portrait of the vegetable as an object of veneration. Like Wu Shaoxiang, whose sculptures of fruit are made of lattices of soldered coins, Mr. Zhu imagines’ staple foods as commodities and as spiritual on humanoid overtones, suggesting body. parts even as they retain their vegetable character. A similar ambiguity, although in a very different guise, is present in Julie Allen’s cake-shaped confections, which are actually made of deflated balloons. Her use of rubber to represent baked goods places the work squarely in the Surrealist tradition.Maggie Doyle’s candy-coated tree branches and melting picture frames cast in colored sugar explore similar terrain, as do Pamela Hadfield’s chandelier, ladder and bicycle richly embellished in fondant, rock candy and rhinestones. Such transformations elevate ordinary objects to imaginary status and, like Meret Oppenheim’s. furlined teacup, prompt disquieting sensations.’30th Anniversary Exhibition’Graphic Eye Gallery, 402 Main Street, Port Washington, (516) 883-9668. Through Jan. 30.Founded in 1974 as a printmakers’ cooperative, the gallery is now ashowcase for members working in various media. But prints and drawings are its primary focus.In “Multiple Faces,” Betty Gimbel uses coquettishly from behind a fan in Raisy Derzie’s monotype “The Spanish Bride.”Gyrating clouds, hills and trees enliven Marion Klein’s “Alder Plains Bog at Dawn,” an expressionistic oil on paper that fairly jumps off the page. “Red Shore,” a pastel by Anna Pellaton, is even more abstract, barely suggesting sky, sea and land glimpsedder’s collage “Seascape of the Mind” effectively uses striated curves to suggest flowing water and billowing clouds.What at first appears to be an abstract pattern of crumpled paper and string coalesces into mounted figures in Roz Udow’s collagraph “Samurai Horse.” Similarly, one must tease the subject from Lenore Seroka’s “Solstice,” a dense encaustic painting etched with incisions, and Hannah Ritter’s “Matrix,” another waxed panel from which cryptic markings emerge enticingly. José Luis Seligson focuses on the geometry of a footwear design in “Excellent Shoes,” a manipulated photograph that bleaches out extraneous patterns. “Quantum States Il,” a jazzy gouache by Mara Szalajda, uses strong color to syncopate its geometric structure.
ART REVIEWS; Sensuous Imagery With Social Commentary By Helen A. Harrison Published: February 17, 2002’Artists Invite Artists’Graphic Eye Gallery, 301 Main Street, Port Washington, (516) 883-9668. Through March 3.In this show, works by each of this cooperative gallery’s 24 members hang in tandem with pieces by invited guests. In several cases, the members and guests are related, and at times the kinship is reflected in their art.José Luis Seligson uses polymer resin as a glaze on ”Incisions,” a provocative relief that includes a transparent mask in that medium. For his son, Jonathan, polymer resin is a binder in ”Memory Banks,” a whimsical jumble of fanciful souvenirs trapped in a tank of the stuff.Clear resin also features in a work on paper from Ellen Brous’s ”Second Sight” series, where it focuses attention on patterns under the surface. Its crystal quality is echoed in ”Blue Bowls,” a pair of glass vessels by her son, Todd.Michael Fishman has adapted ”Las Vegas,” a lovely schematic etching by his mother, Barbara, into a multipaneled print that combines impressions from two of her plates. Added color, rotated imagery and a shadowy overlay transform the original landscapes into an appropriation Ms. Fishman obviously endorses.Although not related, Susan Kornblum and her guest, Barbara Rosenzweig, share an interest in chromatic abstraction. Both artists’ oil paintings allow undertones to peek through the surface, creating a rich interaction of color harmonies.Mara Szalajda’s gouache, ”Towers 2,” a study in strict linear geometry, and Fay Arton’s ”Watching the Surfers,” a naturalistic, snapshot-like colored pencil rendering of a beach scene, are at opposite aesthetic extremes Raisy Derzie may admire the stark stylization of the jazzy cavorting figures in Barbara De Gregoria’s monotype, ”On Fire,” but her own monotype, ”Adirondack,” a painterly treatment of hills and foliage, shows that she and her guest are on different creative wavelengths.Photos: ”Moment,” left, by Yuka Hasegawa is on view at the Port Washington Public Library. A work from Ellen Brous’s ”Second Sight” series and ”Blue Bowls,” by her son, Todd, are at the Graphic Eye Gallery in Port Washington.; ”Abandoned Female Form,” part of a survey of work by Margaret Curtis, is on display at the Amelie A. Wallace Gallery at the State University of New York at Old Westbury.