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“It’s All Good,”


How do you fit over 500 works of art, from 454 artists, into one Brooklyn art space? Rich Timperio, proprietor of Sideshow Gallery (19 Bedford Ave) is the man to ask, though he may admit that his physics-defying feat might prove hard to duplicate.

“It’s All Good (Apocalypse Now)” (on view through Feb. 20th) is indeed apocalyptic in it’s grandeur and revelatory scope. The works, predominately paintings, are hung salon style from floor to ceiling and, though thickset, the gallery seems somehow quite spacious. Expertly arranged in a considered attempt to give each work it’s own aural space, Timperio, a painter himself, considers the installation his own contribution to the show. “I start with the larger and more difficult works first” he shares, “and continue from there. It’s like a puzzle, making order out of chaos.”

“It’s All Good” is part of an 11 year tradition of winter anniversary shows mounted by Timperio, that have grown exponentially from their earliest incarnations. Including artwork too myriad to enumerate here, my personal show favorites nonetheless would include a suite of sensitively rendered Brooklyn streetscapes by Scott Williams (a calming respite amidst the visual deluge), two jazzy “Blue-Note Record” like abstractions by Jim Wilkinson, a ghostly-lit interior photograph by Caroline Scott and a delightful, rain-cloud paper construction by Todd Rosenbaum, who’s double-sided painting reminds us that behind every winter storm lies a vernal spectrum of possibility.

Of singular note is the brilliant and hilarious, “What Does Jesus Think of Lapdancing?” a propagandist pamphlet offered by Charmaine Wheatley, in which the artist beats the evangelicals at their own game, using biblical scripture to sanction the virtues of sensual excess.

Lastly there are a number of works wherein the execution seems to mirror the visual experience of the kaleidoscopic show itself, including a charming patchwork fabric relief sculpture from Eileen Weitzman, an engaging acrylic abstraction by Eric Banks of a chaotic field of color being restrained within a singular shape, and Debra Jenks’ clever, “The Strange Woman and Seven Diamond Miners”, where the artist, through obscuring select passages of a found books text, highlights an alternative reading whilst simultaneously revealing much of the editor herself.

The entire show can be read in a similar way. As your eye travels across the walls of the space, it returns again to rest on certain favorites…a charcoal drawing here, a blue landscape there. Does what I focus on, what I seem drawn to, indicate some truth about me? About my likes and my interests? With a cornucopian world to select from, do my choices signal as much about my preferences as they do about my personage?

—Enrico Gomez