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"Persistence of Vision" Is a Mingling of Minds

Fred Larson

Fred Larson

You know how you can set up two computers to talk to each other and share information? That's what appears to be happening with the body of work created by artists Fred Larson and David Moore Jr., whose show, "Persistence of Vision," closes at the the Quarter Gallery on Saturday. Allowing themselves to riff off each other, the art feels like a conversation between two subconscious minds. 

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What's interesting about the way the show is set up is that not only are finished pieces by the two artists displayed, sometimes side by side and sometimes separate, but there is also a table toward the back full of sketchbooks and works in progress. So you can see some of the process the artists undertook to get to their result. 

Both have a layered quality to their art. Larson, who is mostly working with collage and mixed media, juxtaposes elements of mass media like newspapers with images from Western art history. He'll mix up recent images of beheading, for instance, with a painting depicting a brutal conquest from days of yore. Similarly, he'll piece together contemporary photographs of women being objectified with classical paintings where the male gaze is strongly present. 

Moore's work is often less direct, utilizing abstraction without directly commenting on current or historical events. Yet there's a symbioses happening between the two artists, where you can see a kind of call and response with the color palette and tone of the two bodies of work.
 
There's also a kind of cinematic quality that emerges in the show, particularly in Larson's work, where it seems we are peering into filmstrips or stills from some avant-garde film. Moore's work echoes that energy, his broad gestures simulating movement. 

Both artists are at the University of Minnesota, and in the program notes they thank the art department for encouraging their relationship. They previously showed work together last fall at the Regis West Lower Gallery. Let's hope that their collaboration continues in some form on future projects. 

IF YOU GO:

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"Persistence of Vision: Fred Larson and David Moore Jr."

Through Saturday, May 9

The Quarter Gallery

405 21st Ave. S., Minneapolis.

Hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.