In a juried show the Art Hotel Artists Collective challenged female artists to artistically interpret Valentine’s Day. After the final judging, the h’ART Attack exhibit features 17 artists and 44 works of art about love. Considering the confusing universal nuances of love (including words in different languages describing types of love without an English translation), the theme was open-ended leaving room for the artists’ imaginations. The show’s love stories range from romantic to provocative, witty to dramatic and contain many surprises.
The h’ART exhibit is on display through March 17 at the Art Hotel Gallery, 1112 South Akard St., located in the historic Hotel Newland building in the Cedars Arts District of downtown Dallas. Art prices range from $85 to $10,000 and may be viewed by appointment only or during gallery hours. Check with the gallery website for more information about events and workshops.
Revealing titles like “The Dove’s Heart,” “Dear Heart,” “Gruesome Tenderness,” “Just For a Minute, She Thought She Lost Her Way,” “Urban Love,” “I Am More Than Enough,” “For the Love of Money,” “There’s Plenty of Other Fish…,” “Sticks and Stones,” “Singles Awareness Day,” “Warrior Soldier: Love They Enemy?” and “Keeping His Hope” give a glimpse into the complex emotions of love and intimacy.
In “Keeping his Hope” artist Melissa Wertz’s child-like mixed media assemblage is deeply personal. It honors her firefighter brother who has an inoperable heart condition similar to the famous actor John Ritter. Johanna Roffino Hulsey's "Nature Lover" a found object sculpture is intriguing and beautiful. Rita Barnard’s “You’ve Got to Have a Heart” is a moving tribute to her sister who lost her 4-½ year battle with ovarian cancer. Linda Ford’s “Sticks and Stones” is an edgy witty piece created with handmade paper and acrylic. Julia McLain’s “L.O.V.E. (I think)” has a lively pop art feel. Jacque Forsher’s “I Am More Than Enough” is a cool affirmation of self-worth and a provocative mixed media art piece. Marilee Vergati-Hayne’s “Urban Love” resembles graffiti and is an energetic mixture of dark hues with iridescent oil paints. Rachel Garay Kolb's collage "Love Hurts" immediately draws your eye to the portrait surrounded by vivid colors and shapes.
There are works that express saudade (Portuguese word that refers to the longing for someone you have loved and lost that beautifully expressed in Fado music). Some pieces represent toska (the Russian word for the longing of the soul and a restless love sickness), while others share the memories and love of family or the excitement of a new love. Regardless of whether you are a romantic or a cynic this exhibit is an inspiring look at intimacy and the human spirit. It shares cautionary tales, optimism and hope. Like love this show needs to be experienced.
Art Hotel Gallery
1112 S Akard
Dallas, TX 75215
Gallery hours: Thursdays 6-8 p.m.
Saturdays: noon - 4 p.m.
Contact owner Johanna Roffino-Hulsey for a "by appointment only" viewing email@example.com or use the website contact form.
The Art Hotel Collective began in September 2011 and currently has 16 members. Gallery owner Johanna Roffino-Hulsey wanted to use her large space in the historic Cedars Art District as a way to showcase local artists. After discussing her idea with fellow artists the collective was born. Their mission is to bring original local art to the community through creative gallery events and artist-led workshops.