This inaugural offering for 2011, curated by Shayne Wulbert, features the imaginative abstract paintings of Bruce Thorn and K.A. Letts and the unique cut paper work of Richard Shipps.
The exhibition runs from January 14 through February 28, 2011. An opening reception was held on January 21 at the gallery. The gallery is free and open to the public. The gallery is open daily from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday and by appointment.
Bruce Thorn's paintings are concerned with contemplative abstraction and invention, imagination and exploration. Meandering line and expressionistic background washes often serve as the beginning of a process, suggesting anthropomorphic, organic and geometric forms and interactions. Narrative has been discarded and replaced with a visual language of color, shape, line, texture and movement. Simplified visual means are utilized to enable complex results. Each work offers multiple interpretations while challenging the process of cognition, how we form associations and meaning. Bruce is a native of Chicago. He received his BFA from SAIC, 1975 and MFA from University of Illinois at Chicago, 1987.
"I accept the notion that life confronts us with chaos. Through painting, I attempt to come to terms with this chaos."-Bruce Thorn, 2007
Kathleen Letts began her creative life in the theater. She received her MFA from Yale Drama School, where she studied set and costume design. Although she no longer works in the theater, many of the skills and techniques learned there have been useful in the studio. She considers herself an expressionist, working intuitively from images that come to the right brain and go directly into her art. Taken as a whole, her unique work fits comfortably into a Chicago aesthetic which can be described as well-crafted pop expressionism. Kathleen's aesthetic has been described by arts writer Jeff Stevenson of eXaminer.com as “a wonderfully unique take on the classical idea of cubism.”
K.A. Letts is currently represented by A.I.R. Gallery in New York.
Richard Shipps attended Albion College, Detroit Society of Arts & Crafts and Wayne State University. He has shown his work throughout the Chicago area since moving here in 2007 from Michigan. His precision-cut dimensional paper work focuses on the intersection of positive and negative imagery. Richard developed his paper cutting skills in the late 1960's while working for a studio producing artwork for slides and motion picture animation. He explores the boundaries between form and counter-form. Interlocking and individual patterns are revealed through subtle or sometimes jarring changes in relationship. Shapes migrate through a series of states to reveal the narrative.
Shipps says, " My work looks at shadow as light, light as shadow, informed by shape-memories and emotions. These forms reveal imagery in both positive and negative space in a framework of changing references."
Curator Shayne Wulbert has worked as a consultant, curator, and associate gallery director over the past decade. She received her BA in Art History from University of Wisconsin, Madison, followed by a Masters in Arts Management from Columbia College.