Home artnet Artsy
Bonfire of the Vanitas:
Group Invitational

Exhibition: Bonfire of the Vanitas : Group Invitational

Dates: April 14 - May 31, 2006

Opening Reception: Friday, April 21, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Gallery Hours: Monday-Friday, 10-6 pm. and prior to performances.

Location: Temple Gallery, 330 South Scott Avenue, in the Temple of Music and Art. The Temple Gallery is managed by Etherton Gallery 

Contact:    624-7370

Contents: Etherton Gallery presents its sixth annual invitational exhibition Bonfire of the Vanitas. Due to the success of our ongoing invitational exhibitions, Van Gogh Fakes, Self-Portraits, Black & White, Tucson Artists In Underpants, and Wherefore ART Thou : Shakespeare by Tucson Artists, Etherton Gallery is sponsoring its sixth invitational exhibition Bonfire of the Vanitas. This thematic show will coincide with the Arizona Theatre Company’s production of Tuesdays with Morrie in April. Tuesdays with Morrie is a magical chronicle of the time that Mitch Albom (the author) and Morrie Schwartz, his college professor and mentor, spent together. Their rekindled relationship turned into the final class −lessons in how to live −Morrie's lasting gift to his student and the world.

The depiction and interpretation of the reflective nuances of transition, conjoined with the appreciation of life’s pleasures and accomplishments and their inevitable loss are inspiring themes for some of Western civilization’s most significant works of art. In Bonfire of the Vanitas artists were asked to explore the thematic realm of the Latin word, vanitas, which has to do with the illusional appearance of things –the primary speaking being and the shadow being-beside-us.* In the 16th century the emblematic, symbolic analogues of language were visually manifested in virtuoso still lifes that contained a collection of objects chosen and arranged to remind the viewer of self regard, futility, emptiness, lust, greed, mortality and the evanescense of life. Hour glasses, skulls, mirrors, butterflies, flowers, guttering candles, books, and overturned cups, to name a few, were all used to speak to the ephemera of life and our need to record its figment.

As evidenced by this exhibition Tucson artists have brought a range of interpretation in various forms and media to animate the vanitas traditions in classical art. From Bailey Doogan’s scientific reference of transition in the form of the Tiktaalik roseae, a fossilized 375-million year old fish that walked onto the land from the sea and now flies in the face of religious creationists, to Josh Goldberg’s poetic sense of loss as realized in “…the breathturn of mist, shadow, water and smoke,” these provocative images range from social-political-art historical references to the ironic and metaphoric cadences of dreams and memories.


*The nature of existence as viewed through something else

Gallery hours are Monday - Friday 10am-6pm
and prior to Arizona Theatre Company performances

The Temple Gallery is managed by
Phone: 520-624-7370

at the Temple of Music and Art
330 South Scott Avenue
Tucson, Arizona

Etherton - Temple Gallery


Go Back to the Show