Saturday, April 7, 2012

Cross MacKenzie Gallery, Washington, DC, Group Show, Apr-May 2012

Lyn Horton, Opening Out, 2011, colored pencil on gouache on rag paper

Opening April 13th 6-8
Charles Anthony,
John Brown, Lyn Horton, Laurel Lukaszewski, 
Ellen Wagener 

Cross MacKenzie Gallery is pleased to present "Twisted", a group exhibition featuring 5 artists who share the use of a single element - the simple curving line - as the launching point to create engaging and complex works. Patterns are formed by the repeating interwoven lines in these artworks in four different media - photography, ceramics, wood and works on paper. In each piece, there is a sense that the artist is controlling and bending a force to their will to create order out of chaos. The curving, curling, wild lines have an agenda, a desire to escape the restraints of the drawing or sculpture's bounds, but are disciplined into aesthetic submission.

Lyn Horton's pencil and gouaches drawings are hypnotic. The artist has executed Sol Lewitt wall drawings and is a master of controlling her small pencil - line by line - until a large and powerful work of art emerges.

John Brown's photographs capture wisteria vines in silhouette that reach with sinuous strands across the watercolor paper like jet-black India ink spills. This current work is an outgrowth of the striking "Vine Series" presented at Cross MacKenzie last spring.

Real Midwestern cyclones are drawn in the height of their twisting motion in the dynamic charcoal drawings by the Iowan artist, Ellen Wagener. The energy of the twisters is present in these small but power-packed pieces included in the show.

Laurel Lukaszewski has broken out of her familiar black and white extruded ceramic elements with a new hanging ceramic sculpture made of colored clay ribbons which reference vines even more directly in this palette of twisted lines.

Finally, noted architect and sculptor, Charles Anthony, tames twisted wood and writhing vines to create beautiful mirror frames whose interwoven elements literally have to be tied and screwed down to control their natural habit of reaching for another vertical to use as a climbing trellis. Combing hair in front of these mirrors is like mimicking the efforts of the sculptor in smoothing down stray curving lines of hair into a pleasing frame of the face. Anthony's architectural projects must stand up to serious building codes, classical dimensions and construction deadlines. His whimsical side is let loose here to our delight. The tension in all of these works of art comes from their twisted nature - parallel lines need not apply.

The opening reception for the artists is April 13, 6-8 and runs thru May 16th.
Digital images available upon request.

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