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by BWW News Desk
Fountain Gallery, representing artists with mental illness, today announced the upcoming exhibition Collaged Realities: Photography and Mixed Media, which will open with a Reception on January 10, 2013, 6-8pm and continue through March 6. This 30-work exhibition highlights over 15 collages by Peter Wooster, the esteemed designer of gardens, homes and public spaces. In 2006 he suffered a debilitating stroke that eventually led him to another form of communication: photo collage. Wooster is a Fountain Gallery Visiting Artist, who was selected by guest curator Patterson Sims to be shown along with three Fountain Gallery artists who employ collage and assemblage: Azure Bourne, Martin Cohen and Julio Mendoza. Fountain Gallery is located at 702 Ninth Avenue at 48th Street. Gallery Hours: Tuesday - Saturday, 11am-7pm; Sunday, 1pm-5pm.
"Fountain Gallery's mission of support, exploration, and celebration of the complex interconnection of mental health and creativity is important and transformative, and I am
pleased to have the opportunity to present Peter Wooster's cornucopias of images here," said Patterson Sims, a New York City-based independent art curator, writer, and
consultant, who is Chairman of The Board of Independent Curators International and President of the Leon Polk Smith Foundation. Sims has also been affiliated with
OK Harris Gallery, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Seattle Art Museum, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the Montclair Art Museum. "Peter's art
cleverly concretizes, connects and aesthetizes the vast and all-inclusive media-saturated and 'Google Image' world in which we now all dwell," continued Sims. "Presenting his work in the context of three Fountain Gallery artists - Azure Bourne, Martin Cohen, and Julio Mendoza - adds breadth and perspective to Wooster's way of seeing the world as agglomerations of incessant and fractured realities." In explaining his decision to show Wooster with the three Fountain Gallery artists, Sims noted, "Though previously
unknown to one another, Wooster and Martin Cohen utilize a highly similar omnivorous and compulsive photo collage methodology, yet do so with strikingly different worldviews and increments of imagery. Azure Bourne's lyric and whimsical visual poetry marries scrapes and cast-offs, and Julio Mendoza deftly manipulates commonplace trademark images and paper fragments into simple yet trenchant visual fables."
Educated at Pratt Institute, Connecticut-based Peter Wooster (b.1947) became well known for projects including the design and renovation of homes and estates for high-profile clients such as Stephen Sondheim and James Taylor, and for the design of commercial venues such as the Manhattan restaurant Orso and its sister locations in Los Angeles and London. Simultaneously, he began making his mark as a landscape and garden designer. Wooster designed the Seasonal Walk for the New York Botanical Garden, and coverage of his own quarter-acre garden has appeared in nearly every garden publication in the United States, and many in Europe.
In the aftermath of his stroke, Wooster sought alternative methods of creative expression. He drew in charcoal and dabbled in watercolor, made dazzlingly colorful
pictures in colored pencil and worked hard at photography. One day, he was playing with blocks of colored papers, arranging and overlapping them. This was the beginning of his collage work. He dropped all other experiments and began to channel his formidable taste and sense of design into making collages, at first using black and white images originating in The New Yorker and eventually broadening his scope to include an encyclopedic range of publications and periodicals.
The Wooster survey is accompanied by a brief text by Wooster's friend, the Santa Fe-based artist and writer Kathryn Walker.
The Fountain Gallery Visiting Artists Program
The Fountain Gallery Visiting Artists Program was established in 2008 with support from founding sponsor Glenn Close. Through the Program, talented artists with mental
illness from around the world, who may lack opportunities to show their work in a professional setting, are invited to participate in selected Fountain Gallery exhibitions.
About Fountain Gallery
Fountain Gallery is the premier venue in New York City representing artists with mental illness. Founded by Fountain House in 2000 as a not-for-profit exhibition space for its member-artists living and working with mental illness, the Gallery sells original artworks and collaborates with a wide network of artists, curators and cultural institutions. Embracing artists who are emerging or established, trained or self-taught, Fountain Gallery cultivates artistic growth and makes a vital contribution to the New York
This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and by generous support from The Renate, Hans and
Maria Hofmann Trust.