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The Hoffman Gallery at Oregon College of Art & Craft is proud to present Dialogic, an exhibition that surveys several decades of work by Professor Emerita, Georgiana Nehl, together with works by six OCAC alumni who studied with her: Terri Cutz, Marilyn Joyce, Kimo Nelson, Ryan Pierce, Linnea Solveig and Arielle Zamora.
Dialogic implies the question, “What experience is passed between teacher and student that may be detected in the artwork?” Demonstrating a direct influence between mentor and mentee is not what the show aims to offer, though certain threads may be found in the privileging of drawing or the handling of color. The relationships between the individual artists are nuanced in this visual dialogue. These artists are diverse in their approach to image-making but linked by virtue of an attentiveness to detail and to a certain corporeal awareness that motivates their practice. This gathering of images, which tends toward symbolic forms and narrative compositions, ultimately belies a deep commitment to observation. Regardless of stylistic approach, an ethos of careful seeing is evident in the work presented. Almost as a devotional act, the observational ethic here is characterized by the obsession to know something through sustained attention to the subject, the material, or the movements of one’s body. How then to record those observations? A viewer may discern the answer in the myriad details, or the broad simplified forms and gestures. The record is in the meditative repetition of mark and color, in certain formal organizing principles or in the painted memory of being in place.
In Nehl’s exhibited series, Mandalas, an equilibrium has been struck between a drawing sensibility that is used to plot and structure the work and the lushness of an oil painted surface. Circles, squares, and grids are leveraged as foundational support for complex emotional or spiritual musing. Ordinary domestic objects, traditional signs and abstract symbols invite the viewer to read multiple interchangeable messages. In the series Interior Landscapes, restrained palettes of rich dark de-saturates are punctuated by brightly washed areas of colored light. Conceptually organized around a divination practice derived from the I-Ching, each painting foretells and reflects a common human condition. The work telegraphs empathy and wisdom without pandering. Abide the darkness, they seem to say, gird yourself for turmoil and look for the light.
Dates of Exhibition: August 8—September 2, 2018
Opening Reception: Wednesday, August 8, 2018 | 5—7 pm
Alumni Reception: Thursday, August 30, 2018 | 4—7 pm
Public Open Hours:
Monday—Thursday: 7:30 am—9:30 pm
Friday: 7:30 am—5 pm
Saturday—Sunday: 8 am—5 pm