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Contemporary Art Museum St Louis Great Rivers Biennial – You Tube Interview

Great Rivers Biennial winner Michelle Oosterbaan discusses her process and feelings about what art means in a You Tube Broadcast.

By: Great Rivers Biennial

amberbabes & bedrock

Great Rivers Biennial 2008 – Living Room Trifold Catalog

Published upon the occasion of the Great Rivers Biennial, 2008

By: Laura Fried Assistant Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art, St. Louis

Download Trifold Catalog from the 2008 Great Rivers Biennial from the Museum of Contemporary Art, St. Louis.
Includes interview between Michelle Oosterbaan and Laura Fried.


The Great Rivers Biennial is back. And bigger.

Published in The Riverfront Times, Saint Louis, Missouri Published on January 30, 2008

By: Malcolm Gay

One created an international relief agency modeled in no small part on the United Nations. Another produced a mnemonic landscape of expanding and receding subjects, inviting the viewer to navigate the amorphous waters of memory. Still a third illustrated two profoundly violent scenes from Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange, playing with the relationship between viewers and viewed. …Read On »


Art on Paper

Published in Art of Paper, Jan / Feb 2007 Review of Michelle Oosterbaan: look out, doopler, doppler, so hum, little gem, Gallery Joe, Philadelphia, September – November 2006

By: Fred B. Adelson

For her first solo show at this gallery, Oosterbaan presented eight drawings: five formidably scaled ones pinned directly to the wall – largest measuring 78 by 51 inches – and three smaller framed ones.  Each consists of vignettes in colored pencil and graphite that combine abstract patterns and recognizable images without hierarchic significance.  …Read On »


Drawing Papers #67 Catalog / The Drawing Center

Published in The Drawing Papers #67, as part of the Levity: Spring Selections, 2007 Group Exhibition at the Drawing Center, New York.

By: Michelle Oosterbaan

Selections Spring 2007

My recent drawings have evolved out of the process of working on temporary installations.  These site-responsive projects enveloped the viewer within rectilinear fields of color, sharp edges of taped lines, and references to the history of architecture.  Each project created elastic environments that integrated the viewer’s shifting perspective. …Read On »

The New Yorker

Published in The New Yorker on Levity: Selections Spring 2007 at the Drawing Center. Art Section, April 2, 2007

By: The New Yorker

35 Wooster St. (212-219-2166)—For “Levity: Selections Spring 2007,” fourteen participants selected from the Drawing Center’s artist registry liberate drawing from gravity, in one sense or another. Lisa Perez’s paper cutouts hover on the walls, like clustering spores; Norma-Jean Bothmer’s vivid blue drawings of her Teddy bear resist solemnity. Light is the “pencil” that creates the images in Bill Gerhard’s geometric works, purple sheets of construction paper strategically exposed to sunlight. …Read On »


Catalog Essay from: Facets of Myth and Memory, Portland State University, Portland, SE, 2007

By: Richard Torchia

Drawnwork” is an exhibition of works on paper by four artists who employ drawing as a “means to transgress the accepted distinctions applied to past, present and future.”1 Recognizing the powerful role that memory plays in this process, each of these artists strive to establish ways in which the personal, often hermetic nature of the remembered image might yield more open, universal readings. …Read On »

Shifting Scales

Published in The Philadelphia Inquirer Friday, October 13, 2006

By: Edith Newhall

Michelle Oosterbaan’s large, mostly unframed drawings look like dreams about flying transposed to paper.  A galloping horse here, a dog there, some trees on fire, a house underconstruction (or destruction?). …Read On »

Outsider’s View

Juror: Cornelia Butler, chief curator of the department of drawings at New York’s Museum of Modern Art

By: Review in The Philadelphia Inquirer, April 2006, of Arcadia University’s 24th Biennial Works on Paper Group Exhibition

It’s always fascinating to see what an outsider will make of a particular region’s artistic output, and what he or she as a curator deems capable of contributing to a larger idea – as opposed to simply culling the good from the mediocre and creating a sprawling, meaningless group show.

To its credit, Arcadia University Art Gallery’s group exhibitions almost always project the finger-on-the-pulse, bigger-picture approach, and none more so than the gallery’s 24th “Works on Paper” biennial. …Read On »

Art Papers

Published in ART PAPERS | May / June 2004 Issue

By: Tom Csaszar

Recent installation works address some combination of social, personal or perceptual issues.  MICHELLE OOSTERBAAN’s installations lean toward defining perceptual and spatial statements that underpin our social and personal views.  At the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (December 12, 2003 – February 1, 2004) she spread colored rectangles across the walls and floors to make deadpan statements whose drama is present but underplayed.  …Read On »

Painting in the Round

Published in The Philadelphia Inquirer | Museums and Galleries Friday, January 16, 2004

By: Edward J. Sozanski, Inquirer Art Critic

Normally paintings on a wall offer the viewer only two spatial orientations.  One can stand close or distant, dead center or off to one side. But Michelle Oosterbaan has created a novel option: standing inside a painting. …Read On »

I Want Space Without Pictureness

Catalog Essay from: Michelle Oosterbaan Installation at The Morris Gallery December 13, 2003 – February 1, 2004
Curated by: Alex Baker, curator at Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art and Museum

By: Richard Torchia, Director, Arcadia University Art Gallery

Painting is an art on the verge of exhaustion, one in which the range of acceptable solutions to a basic problem—how to organize the surface of a picture – is severely restricted.  The use of shaped rather than rectangular supports can, from the literalist point of view, merely prolong the agony.  The obvious response is to give up working in a single plane in favor of three dimensions.
-Michael Fried
“Art and Objecthood,” 1967 …Read On »

Past, Present and Future

Catalog essay for Future Imperfect: On Entering the New Century, Sharidan Art Gallery, Kutztown University. February 6 – March 11, 2001

By: Robin Rice

Though their work is distinctive, Ruth Borgenicht and Michelle Oosterbaan share a feeling for materials and a feeling for material culture. Both are unusually grounded in the present: what it feels like, what it looks like, sounds like, how it shapes itself around us — and, equally, what shaped it. …Read On »

amber babes detail2

At the Top of Their Craft

Published in St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Sunday February 3, 2008 on the occasion of the Great Rivers Biennial Winners Exhibition at the Contemporary Art Museum

By: David Bonetti

The “Great Rivers Biennial” is the Oscars, or at least the Whitney Biennial, for the local art world.  Held every other year, the winners, chosen by jurors from outside the region to ensure fairness, are given cash — $20, 000 this year, up from $15,000 – and the opportunity to show their work at the Contemporary Art Museum in one of the most widely anticipated exhibitions of the year.  Funded by the Gateway Foundation, it aims to raise the profile of local visual artists.

…Read On »