What to do
Jan. 17 brings a doubleheader: Susan Brenner, retired UNCC professor, will open a solo exhibition at Rowe Art Gallery at UNCC, and Marek Ranis, current professor at UNCC, will present work at the New Gallery of Modern Art uptown. With any luck, we can make it to both receptions! Brenner’s exhibition, “The State of Things,” opens in UNCC’s campus gallery with a reception 5-7 p.m. Ranis’s exhibition, “Sea Scapes,” presents a series of paintings based on his travels and research in the Arctic, an area Ranis has focused on for nearly 15 years. The reception takes place from 6-8 p.m.
Then on Jan. 18, we’re planning on another doubleheader, first Carlos Estevez’s solo exhibition at LaCa Projects, followed by “Tree People” at The Light Factory (see separate story). The Light Factory exhibition features two Finnish photographers, Ritva Kovalainen and Sanni Seppo, and imagery from their travels in Finland, Estonia and East Karelia, a rural area bordering Russia. Presented for the first time in this country, the exhibition focuses on the myth of the World Tree, sometimes called the “tree of fate” – a large tree growing at the center of the world that links the heavens, the underworld and everything in between. The reception runs 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Where to go
When Randy Shull and Hedy Fischer opened “¡VIVA!” at their new exhibition space, 22 London in Asheville, we were disappointed that we had another commitment. We won’t miss a smaller curated version of this exhibition at the Projective Eye Gallery at UNC Charlotte Center City, with an opening 6-8 p.m. Jan. 19. The exhibition features works from Shull and Fischer’s personal art collection by 10 stellar Latin American artists, including Jorge Méndez Blake, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Jose Dávila, Gabriel de la Mora, Tania Franco Klein, and two favorites: Rafael Lozano-Hemmer and Santiago Sierra.
Who to meet
We’re excited about a new exhibition space, Met Contemporary, opening in Rock Hill. On Jan. 20, an exhibition entitled “Odyssey” will open, featuring some great Charlotte-area artists. Meet Jason Watson, Liliya Zalevskaya, Foozhan Kashkooli, and Nico Armortegui. Several of these artists have been the focus of HappeningsCLT’s Carolina Art Crushes, so you know we’ll be out in full support. Holly Wilson, a sculptor based in Syracuse, also exhibiting her work, will present a talk at 6 p.m.
Each week, Grace Cote and Lia Newman offer Observer readers a to-do list on immersing yourself in visual arts around town. Newman is director/curator of the Van Every/Smith Galleries at Davidson College, Cote is senior coordinator at Jerald Melberg Gallery, and they collaborate on the blog HappeningsCLT (happeningsCLT.com).
For a seasonlong visual arts calendar, go to: www.charlotteobserver.com/entertainment/arts-culture/article172583126.html.