Jan 17th - Apr 24th, 2021
Robert Flynn (1967 - 2007)
Robert Flynn received his MFA from Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ and his BFA from Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL. Flynn's late work was heavily influenced by gardening, yard work and the competition in American culture for the "trophy lawn." Creating sculpture, drawings and paintings that celebrated the various elements of the yard, Flynn objectified nature – making the backyard a modern-day fetish.
Flynn's work can be found in collections across the country, such as Bascom Palmer Eye Institute; University of Miami, Naples, FL; Cisneros Capital Group, Miami, FL; Hale & Dorr LLP, Boston, MA; Key Largo Grand Resort; Marriott Corporate Collection; Neiman Marcus Corporate Collection; Miami Dade Public Library; Omni Hotel, Orlando; Woodson Art Museum, Wausau, WI.
Elliot Miller (1942 - 2003)
A Miami native, Elliot Miller shared various studio spaces with Robert Thiele in Opa Locka, North Miami, and eventually Brooklyn, New York from 1976 until Miller's untimely death in 2003. Miller's medium was wood, with which he worked with an unbridled energy, roughing out large blocks with a chainsaw and finishing with chisels and traditional woodworking tools. He also developed a laminating process in which smaller pieces were glued and pieced together to form larger works.
Earlier works from his time in Miami include semi-abstract pieces which evolved to highly finished, mostly female figures during his later Miami period. The move to Brooklyn and an altogether urban setting in 1991, allowed his late period to flourish. Paradoxically, during his time in the city, he became interested in carving woodland creatures including marmots, hares, bears, possums, and domesticated cats. These later works have not been seen since his death in 2003.
Miller earned his BFA from Florida Atlantic University, and his MFA from the University of Oregon in Eugene. His work is included in the permanent collections of the Frost Museum at Florida International University, the Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art, the University of Oregon Museum of Art, and Miami Dade College's Permanent Collection. Miller's solo exhibitions include shows at O.K. Harris Gallery in New York and the Elaine Benson Gallery in Bridge Hampton, New York.
Tom Schmitt (1929 - 2018)
Born in 1929 in Columbus, OH, Tom Schmitt has lived and worked all over the United States until settling in Miami where he lived and worked for many years.
"There is an uncomplicated beauty in the geometric paintings of Tom Schmitt. Since the early 1960s, Schmitt has created abstract paintings that rival that of his more well-known international contemporaries, but he did so away from the spotlight. Which is why Bridge Red Studios in North Miami, an artist-run exhibition space that highlights artists whose work have often fallen under the radar, has decided to give Schmitt a solo exhibit focused on his early, ground-breaking work from the 1960s and 70s.
Maybe because 2018 is turning out to be another chaotic year, the work of Tom Schmitt can feel transcendent, offering an aesthetic space that reminds us of the best that we can achieve. Take, for example the cover image 198, the acrylic on shaped canvas from 1967; in various light hues of blue, with a circle, squares and one centrally positioned vertical line, it delivers a perfect figuration. It's similar to the exuberant bright yellow piece in the exhibition, 210, also from 1967, where Schmitt has made the central circle protrude from the canvas. These works move and react almost like what we hope the universe does, ever changing in subtle ways but always in balance.
Although Schmitt has roots in the Midwest, he created most of his paintings here in Miami, in a time when the city was still a relative backwater in terms of cultural activity, as there were few museums or galleries offering artists much exposure.
As vivid as these paintings are, Schmitt's almost sculptural works that resemble pillars or wooden planks are amazing studies in form and color. In very subtle gradations, you can ascertain changes in white and off-white, or in almost imperceptible lines of green or brown.
In the exhibit there are some exquisite small pieces on paper, also very minimal, once again created with basic geometric patterns of lines, squares and circles. These more intimate studies that echo the larger works draw the eye immediately to the color schemes that Schmitt has so expertly created.
In recent decades, Schmitt has utilized the computer as a tool to make ever more subtle investigations into color saturated form. The evidence of this already mature search lies in this exhibition of his early works. It is a tribute to one of Miami's early masters."
- Anne Tschida, 2018