Drive-By is pleased to announce that our current exhibition, OH Deer!, was reviewed by Cate McQuaid Wednesday, March 23, 2011.

Drive-By is open on Thursdays from 12-4pm and by appointment.



Wednesday  •  March 23, 2011



At Drive-By, 81 Spring Street, Watertown, through April 2

617.835.8255  •  •

Ann Craven's "Looking" (left) and Justin Richel's "Stag Party" from the exhibit "Oh Deer!", at Drive-By in Watertown


By Cate McQuaid

In their sights: deer

On a lighter note, Drive By has mounted "Oh Deer," a giddy little group show spotlighting that charismatic fauna that has in recent years broached the boundaries of suburbia. Deer can symbolize many things: gentleness, potency, the uneasy edge between wild and domestic.

Justin Richel's "Stag Party" comically goes for potency. It's a gouache take on 18th-century portraiture, in which a doleful, blue-eyed gentleman sports not a wig but a voluminous herd of white stags on his head. A more serene deer appears in "A Love Story in Three Acts," gouache works by Alexia Stamatiou and Matt Dugas, featuring a plump, antlered deer and a spaghetti-limbed circus performer, who fall in love, marry, and have children.

In "Looking," Ann Craven uses a loose brush to paint an alert fawn, with rough brushstrokes circling the animal; it's as much about paint as it is about wildlife. Erica Greenwald invokes a hunter's prey in "Deer," a wood panel with a deer's head painted on it, like a head mounted on a plaque, only Greenwald's painting seems to arise organically from knots in the wood, and the deer's antlers drift away with rivulets of wood grain.

Amy Ruppel's paintings with wax and collage blend decorative patterning with references to nature. Similarly, Kyong Ae Kim's surreal "Untitled (Cliff)" is flat and patterned, with shady silhouettes of deer in the foreground. David Curcio's mixedmedia "Hermann Ungar" is an edgy but ultimately sweet portrait of the early-20th-century Czech writer. Part print, part drawing, part embroidery, it's like a needlework sampler with Ungar's dark cameo in the center, surrounded by slight, stitched drawings of seated deer, as if cosseting the tortured writer.