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Black is Beautiful
Opening - Sunday, November 20

Nov. 13, 2022

Black is an ancient color, the first color, the first charcoal drawing dated 35,000 BCE.
Black is serious as in clerical robes and funeral attire.
Black is elegant as in the little black dress and the black tie affair.
Black is pitch, ink, paint.
Black is soot, silk, outer space.

Black has two opposite definitions. It is the lack of all colors of light, or a combination of multiple colors of pigment. The latter definition applies to painting and ceramic glazes.

Rothko Chapel

Black is pervasive in the art world. It appears in the Chavaux cave drawings, in the Greek black figure pottery, in Renaissance portraiture, and Chinese pottery. The ultimate expression of blackness is the Rothko Chapel, housing fourteen massive dark paintings. The work has no subject matter. It has been documented these paintings have evoked the most tears shed by people in front of a work of art.

In Kathleen Cammarata's paintings and drawings she employs black as deep space. Black is both dense and void. It allows form into being, forms that rise, fall, float, and fade. There is a collapse of distinction between representative and non-representative. The space is a connector as well as a divider. It defines the relationships of the forms. The blackness enhances the colors around it. It gives them a luminosity.

In Joe Molinaro's ceramics he uses black and white contrast allowing him to highlight form and surface without much color interference. While he also uses color in his work, the black and white ceramic pieces are more dynamic. In the same way a black and white photograph allows the viewer to experience the narrative in a more direct manner, so too does the black and white surface on the pieces he makes. In some of his earlier work, the white clay (porcelain or white stoneware) serves as a pristine pallet to introduce the black glaze offering a contrast of surface through glazed areas and unglazed areas on the pieces.


Molinaro has a BS from Ball State University and an MFA from Southern Illinois University. He is a Faculty Emeritus at Eastern Kentucky University. He has written many articles and a book on ceramics. He has received two Fulbright awards for research on ceramics in Ecuador. He resides in San Miguel where he maintains a ceramic studio.

Cammarata has been painting for 38 years. She taught in two museums and at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. She has received numerous grants and awards. Her work is collected in the USA, Canada, and Mexico. She lives and works in San Miguel.


The Beauty of Black - opening
Cammarata and Molinaro
Sunday, November 20, 1-4pm
Alameda 6, San Antonio


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