Posted inBooks

The Sore Subject of Family Dynamics

The family unit, siblings, extended family, and the individuals who make up these large trees, is the subject of photographer Lydia Panas’ hardback book of glossy, meticulous portraits, aptly titled The Mark of Abel. Thinking back on the biblical story of Cain and Abel, Panas’ clever reverse of the “mark” seems to imply that her subjects and viewers alike suffer Abel’s curse of brotherhood, fraternity, and family. It’s a rich theme for rich photographs, set in an Eden-like location of lush and overgrown greenery. Ninety-five pages long, containing fifty perfectly paced photographs, The Mark of Abel presents us with hundreds of strangers, all of whom feel bizarrely familiar. Panas’ family portraits are tender rather than sentimental, serious though not cynical, and dysfunctional without being cliché.

Posted inArt

The Sensations of Presence

MIAMI — Strong in the traditions of European and Carribean art, The Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale has an array of standout exhibitions that include the work of painter William Glackens and a collection of ceramics by Pablo Picasso. What left an impression during a recent visit, however, was the work of Los Angeles painter John Sonsini.