Saturday, April 14, 2007

Touchstone Gallery opened two new exhibitions of work by Mary Ott and Melissa Widerkehr

April 11 - May 6, 2007

Mary Ott is showing a series of intaglio prints and luscious sunflower oil and wax screenprints at the Touchstone Gallery. Mary Ott's exhibit, "Prints of Old Europe," shows another dimension of her work. "Traveling with a digital camera in hand, Ott captured images that she has made into original, hand-pulled prints. Although the images are modern, her screen prints evoke a sense of history. Impressions of Crete are shown in overlays of colors and designs. Sunflowers from Slovenia glow in screen prints that incorporate oil paint and wax. Intaglios* present architectural details from the Czech Republic, France, Germany and Italy." The sunflowers were some of my favorite images, showing a luminous surface quality. As in her grasses paintings, Mary Ott continues to investigate forms of nature as source of inspiration for these screenprints.

At the opening reception last night, I overheard Melissa Widerkehr speaking of how a group of her paintings were done in reference to a friend who was very ill. The pieces are unsettling and lyrical at the same time. Figures engage the viewer in distorted exaggerated gestures. Her work addresses psychological and angst issues of being human. The exhibiton runs through May 6.

Opening Reception: Friday, April 13 6:00-8:30 pm
Third Thursday Reception: Thursday, April 19th 6:00-8:00 pm

Touchstone Gallery
406 7th Street, NW, 2nd floor
Washington, DC 20004

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