365体育投注

YOLO COUNTY NEWS

Arts

Pence Gallery: Stories of female strength on display

365体育投注This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Art serves so many distinctly different purposes in life. I’ve long accepted that what I assume motivates one artist, such as fame and fortune, doesn’t even show up on the horizon for other creatives.

365体育投注The important aspect of art-making for Liz Webb and Laurelin Gilmore, whose current exhibit, “The Stories We Tell Ourselves,” is on display at the Pence Gallery through March 29, is its ability to re-tell stories about our own worth and our connection to the natural world. It’s perfect that this exhibit falls in March, Women’s History Month, since both artists honor women’s experiences.

Webb is a mixed-media sculptor who uses ceramic figures to create small narratives of quiet power. The size of her pieces makes them almost like dollhouse scenes, in which the stylized female figures anchor their surroundings. Bits of branches and re-purposed frames form the background upon which her women greet others, such as her “Welcome” sculpture, with its cheery attitude.

As Webb writes, “These pieces are moments, feelings from every-day, little simple, quiet, beautiful moments that make me smile.” It’s that familiarity that captivates the sense of the extraordinary beauty of sitting with a book or the simplicity of drinking a cup of tea.

365体育投注Gilmore’s paintings also tend to focus on the female body; she is a master at using realism to force the viewer to “suspend disbelief” and to see the connection between the human world and the natural order of things.

Her “Asterfro” is a portrait of a woman who is decked out in sumptuous silks, crowned by a head full of aster flowers (Not afro but ‘Aster-fro’) and hummingbirds. Perched on her shoulders are two tabby cats that guard the woman with their furry presence. In her current series, she blends animals with the human form “to expand on themes of feminine power, totem and spirit animals, and the habitation of the planet and the body.”

Gilmore’s ability to render skin, fur, scales, and other surface textures is extraordinary, as is her combination of surreal elements into a natural environment.

Downstairs, the Pence exhibit celebrating the power of watercolor painting continues through March 31. “Water + Color National Juried Exhibit 2020” is an expansive display that includes 38 paintings by 28 artists from across the U.S., including portraits, landscapes, still-life subjects and abstract themes.

It’s an impressive display of the many ways that watercolor paint can be used to capture light, color, reflection and texture. It’s a medium that is rarely chosen by most painters, as many painters consider it just to capture impressions or sketches from life, not as a medium capable of capturing great concepts or themes in its own right.

In fact, watercolor is arguably the most difficult of all painting media to master, and it’s unforgiving of mistakes and requires one to visualize the painting backward, laying down the light colors before the dark ones, and keeping areas of the paper blank to convey highlights.

Save the date: The Pence Gallery Garden Tour returns for the 29th time to Davis from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 3. This self-guided tour through eight spectacular spring gardens in town is our annual fundraiser to support the Pence, a nonprofit art gallery serving the community through the display of art exhibits and education programs. Garden Tour tickets go on sale April 3 at , Newsbeat and Redwood Barn.

— Natalie Nelson is the executive director and curator of the Pence Gallery; her column is published monthly.

CalMatters


Special Publications

Quick Links

Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Service (updated 4/30/2015) and Privacy Policy (updated 4/7/2015).
Copyright (c) 2020 , a family-owned local media company that proudly publishes the , , Davis Enterprise, , , , , and other community-driven publications.