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"Frank Moore:  Green Thumb in a Dark Eden"
2002-06-08 until 2002-07-28
Orlando Museum of Art
Orlando, FL, USA United States of America

The exhibition includes both paintings and works on paper that focus on various aspects of the garden and its dark double, the anti-garden. According to Moore, gardens speak to the human need for spaces that are controlled, productive, nurturing, spiritual, calm and cultivated. They refer to cultural myths of Eden, Arcadia and Shangri-la.  This need forms the foundation of many of his paintings and drawings. 

Works showcased in the exhibition date from 1992 to the present and range from depictions of private gardens to those of Americas national parks. According to Sue Scott, the adjunct curator of contemporary American art for the OMA, This show seeks to look at the garden as a metaphor for the environment and the role of humanity as caretaker. Frank works in a highly realistic style that brings to mind the beautiful surfaces of the Old Masters. And yet, beneath the seductive veneer is often a commentary on the darker side of contemporary life.

About the Artist Born on June 22, 1953, in New York City, Moore is a mid-career artist whose beautifully rendered paintings incorporate a powerful social message. He graduated from Yale University with a concentration in art and psychology.  His first major gallery show was at New Yorks Sperone Westwater in 1993. Moores work is included in many major museums around the country including The Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art. 

But as beautiful as our modern Arcadia may appear to be, says Moore, it is a beauty which is alloyed with all the complexities and toxicities of modern life. Focusing primarily on issues of human health (including AIDS) and environmental issues, I also work with images which can be seen as anti-gardens: spaces which are disordered, decaying, toxic, depressing, stressful and raw. It is perhaps a conundrum of life today that many of these images function on both levels: sites of great, but toxic, beauty. 

 


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