Associated Artists of Pittsburgh
105th Annual Exhibition
Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PA
May 14 - August 15, 2016
Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer, Juror
Recently I went to hear on of my favorite writers talk about his process to students at an art school. When asked how he engages most powerfully with art, he explained that art and togetherness have always been opposites for him. Yes, I thought, I've often felt that art at its best is a tremendously interior experience, an in-your-head and frequently incommunicable thrill. J.D. Salinger, himself famously solitary and withdrawn, put it another way when writing to a friend, "God, how I still love private readers. It's what we all used to be." The salient part of art's promise and please, then, is the cultivation of many distinct frames of mind and multiple divergent perspectives. Through making, looking, and responding, we pursue new curiosities about our subjectivity, the more peculiar the better. The cumulative effect of gathering a great many individual expressions into an exhibition– a collection of contemporaneous bits– is some measure of a shared time and place.
This is not a general survey of the association's membership but rather a small selection curated from hundreds of varied artworks that were submitted. The range of practices and styles remains wide, while proximity begins to reveal compositional affinities, resonant subject matter, related processes, and sympathetic palettes between artists. Groupings of objects produce atmosphere, tone, and mood. Sequences suggest logic, narrative, and language. Juxtaposition celebrates idiosyncrasy, difference, and diversity.