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   Misha Bittleston is a wonderful new abstract artist who's work takes us back to James McNeill Whistler's Nocturne in Black and Gold, when abstraction was still being defined. There is much to say about her work. First, the way she uses black and white for works of Lyrical Abstraction gives this 21st century abstraction a different perspective than with Heron, Motherwell as before with Pollock or Picasso, for example, it is not overt or loud and demanding of attention as we are accustomed to with large scale bright work that is easy on the viewer and random in design or is reduced to paint splattered on the canvas; here is something altogether different and requiring my individual involvement that is my own not with any thinking about the artist.




The Wonderful World of Misha Bittleston
by Christopher Kendalls

Misha Bittleston: Untitled, 2004-03-28   This work is accessible, in a sense that is not often associated with abstract art. Take for consideration "2004-03-28-Untitled-Ink on Paper" which is an under appreciated work: there is something phenomenal in the way we are drawn into a narative as the inhabitants of earth attempting to reach into a heavens, something "Babel" about this work. You can see the disconnect between what is below and what is above, and you are left to imagine where these columns are reaching, which is exactly the point here.

Misha Bittleston: Untitled, 2004-02-22   What about the violence behind "2004-02-22-Untitled"; here we become people walking up a ramp into nothingness, or perhaps crossing a river of sorts into this frightening abyss with unfamiliar plant life that, in all of it's enormity, is both menacing and romantic at the same time.

Misha Bittleston: Dream, 2004-01-27   I am certain there is something to understand in "Dream" (2004-01-27); it has this enormous graffiti mural with dwarfs at the bottom of what? and where? then you look up towards trees in the distance. Moreover, it is all happening in this big pit.

   I love the "Joy Nandy 00011a" (1999-12-12), great melancholy with a fish swimming in nothingness, with nothing but the lights above and below for comfort. Trapped in this space of sorts; Interestingly enough the other Joy works are not consistent with this level of abstraction. "Joy Bunny 00024" is a rather interesting reworking of a photograph yet it is more the literal subject that interests me rather than the technique.

Misha Bittleston: Joy Nandy 00011a, 1999   Of the other digital works, be sure to check out "Goldenidol2" (1999), while it is obvious what this is. The usage of red in monochrome is what really puts this image over the edge.

   Overall, Bittleston combines dark cynicism and social commentary with narrative abstractions of mundane subject matter. There may be something here for everyone, including the usual jump into existentialism and other spiritual matter. Yet not everything poses an objective question, sometimes art, as life, is what it is to you. You may find this work emphasises how uniquly you understand what you see, and how different it is from the person next to you. There is something about this work that reminds us that we are alien from one another, living experiences that no one else will ever have to.Misha Bittleston: Untitled B, 2004-05-24

   Perhaps the idea of what abstract art is has changed significantly since the days of the pioneers. A recent work, "2004-05-24-Untitled B", shows movement from the left to the right and back again. What does it mean? Is this what happened with the ideas, with the execution of them, the methods used? Back and forth, Bittleston has tried different methods, used different materials, interesting that the recent work available is on pen and ink, again, metaphorically, as a writer uses paper to convey their ideas. Perhaps Bittleston's best efforts are on standard, mundane paper, where some of the best ideas through time exist for all to see.




Author Christopher Kendalls (Dayton, Ohio)
Fashion writer and award winning Poet.
Famously claims to be inarticulate and a visual writer.

–2004

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