Joan Belmar

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CHORDS #2/ Talking with a tree..
Acrylic, ink, gouache and oil on canvas
84"x 60" Diptych
2014

The work of Joan Belmar has much in common with that of the great Uruguayan Constructivist, Joaquín Torres García. Both travelled extensively from their birthplaces in the Southern Cone developing and refining their eyes, both of their works move fluidly through two and three dimensional space. Each of these painters developed a distinctive, influential style and palette but was unafraid to experiment outside of those bounds. Coincidentally Belmar recently spent several weeks in Montevideo, Torres Garcia's home town, with Take Me To The River, a project which paired nine artists working in the United States with six peers working in Uruguay.

In Chords, his first solo exhibition at Addison/Ripley, Belmar continues to refine and innovate with works in large and small scale, paintings both intimate and grand. Although circles are a common visual motif for the painter, they are also merely a stepping off point, a framework on which to hang a multidimensional imagination. Referencing maps and grids, suggesting nets and constellations, at once flat and layered, Belmar's recent paintings in acrylic, ink and gouache are intricately composed and balanced, musical in the sense of the series' name, symphonic in their complexity.

Donald Kuspit's group exhibition this year in New York, Washington Color Abstraction, which featured work by Belmar, suggests the affinity of this painter's work to the proud tradition of the Washington Color School which included such painters as Morris Louis, Gene Davis and Kenneth Noland. Indeed, Belmar's work has a strong chromatic element as each of these historic painters has. And his circles echo work by Tom Downing, his colors those of Davis and his veils and washes those of Louis. He has found a resonant home in the Washington area with artists like Sam Gilliam, Carol Brown Goldberg, Hadieh Shafie, Robin Rose, Betsy Stewart, Julie Wolf and Dan Treado.

Recent honors and awards include Artist grants in 2010 and 2013 from the Maryland Arts Council, the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities in 2009 and 2011 and the DC Mayor's Award as an outstanding emerging artist in 2007. Additionally, He was one of eight finalists for the 2013 Bethesda Painting Awards.
 
Adisson Ripley Fine Art
 For more information about the artist and his work, images from the exhibition or to schedule an appointment to view the work, please call Ms. Romy Silverstein at 202.338.5180.

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©2014 Joan Belmar. All rights reserved.

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