Gallery Openings and Events

June Exhibitions at Touchstone Gallery

the Wright Brothers...Orville and Wilbur envision by Timothy Johnson. Courtesy of Touchstone Gallery.

the Wright Brothers…Orville and Wilbur envision by Timothy Johnson. Courtesy of Touchstone Gallery.

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Opening Reception: Friday, June 5 from 6pm to 8:30pm

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GALLERY A
Touchstone Gallery Member Show

GALLERY B
Two if I See by Timothy Johnson
Two figures, two related characters…one storyline, one model, one strategically placed mirror.

The playwright George Bernard Shaw once wrote, “You use a glass mirror to see your face. You use works of art to see your soul.” Ponder that quote when you see Washington D.C. artist Timothy Johnson’s latest exhibit of paintings, entitled Two If I See, showing at the Touchstone Gallery during June.

Johnson, a recipient last year of a fellowship grant from the D.C. Commission for the Arts and Humanities, pairs historical and noted figures in mirrors with their own alter egos: that brother, that partner, that nemesis, with whom it is unlikely we would even know their names; the second self incarnate painted in lush color and texture. Don’t expect to see the famous visages accurately depicted; the artist uses friends, colleagues and himself as models, with striking results.

In the Wright Brothers…Orville and Wilbur envision, Johnson paints the aviation pioneers: the contemplative Wilbur and the impulsive Orville. But the artist shows them as mirror images, flip sides of a coin and who alone could never have achieved the heights they did. We see the brothers at a triumphant moment; oracles into the future without leaving their small Dayton living room.

In The Kray twins…Reggie and Ronnie visit Mum, the violent East End gangsters don suits of muted grey which contrast with Mum’s indigo housedress and the brash green wallpaper. Mum is shown just out of range; her expression stark and twisted, while the boys pose self-possessively. In Theo on a Visit to Arles, Johnson shows Vincent Van Gogh and his younger brother as mirrored reflections during a visit to the former’s bed chambers in Arles: the ruddy, depressive Vin- cent and the nurturing Theo, one the tormented artist and the other a supportive and shrewd art dealer. Only united do we know today the post-impressionist paintings of sunflowers and starry nights.

Not all of Johnson’s canvas pairings portray brothers. With a playful skewing of chronology, his piece Sarah and Hagar…nation building, shows the reflected biblical mothers of Abraham’s sons Ishmael and Isaac: mottled, middle aged ma- tron and younger servant, both in aquamarine pullovers; both great with the sons who would father the Arab and Israeli tribes. The declinations of the story and the characters: slavery and freedom; law and grace; earthliness and transcend- ence, are famous. Yet, as Johnson paints them, in glorious shades of blue and clay red, the women are mirror images, one in the same.

Johnson’s exhibit includes several more extraordinary paintings and will be on display at the Touchstone Gallery from June 3rd through June 28th.

GALLERY C
Being and Becoming: Enter the Kaleidoscope by Pete McCutchen
Color is the wild essence of freedom that runs through the work of Pete McCutchen. His work is bold, lush, vibrant, unrestrained. Entering his world, one enters a sea of pattern, form, and texture. He invites you to enter the Kaleidoscope, to see the world through his eyes.

The Kaleidoscope operates on the principle of multiple reflections: angled mirrors bounce light off of colored objects such as beads, pebbles, or bits of glass. But the mirrors transform those objects, make them beautiful and intriguing. Pete McCutchen uses the lens of his camera in place of angled mirrors.

He observes mundane objects, often decayed. He sees their being, the beauty within, and he sees what they can become with the aid of his practiced eye and mad Photoshop skills.

His subjects are many: the wall of a bankrupt restaurant amidst being stripped of its paint; an old, rusted, cracked abandoned gas pump; the glass of a car window, allowed to bake in the sun and freeze in the winter, delaminating, allowing water to seep between the layers creating cracks and fissures. He gets close, and then gets closer. Often he uses a macro lens to get tight, and when that won’t do he moves closer and closer, his camera decked out with multiple extension tubes.

McCutchen is sometimes asked: “did it look like that?” His reply: “it did to me.”

Color is the wild essence of freedom that runs through the work of Pete McCutchen. His work is bold, lush, vibrant, unrestrained. Entering his world, one enters a sea of pattern, form, and texture. He invites you to enter the Kaleidoscope, to see the world through his eyes.

Pete McCutchen is a fine art photographer who lives and works in Alexandria Virginia. A Torpedo Factory artist since 2010, his work has appeared in more than a hundred juried shows across the United States, including Los Angeles, California, New York, and Texas. His image SBW #6, which is featured in this show, was awarded Best In Show at the Abstract Photography show earlier this year at 1650 Gallery in Los Angeles, California. He was received a number of awards in in international photography competitions, including the ND Awards and the Monochrome Awards. Most recently, he had ten images nominated in five categories in the International Color Awards, including five nominations in the Abstract Photography category, where he garnered an Honorable Mention Award.

Gallery Hours:

  • Wednesday – Friday: 12pm to 6pm
  • Saturday – Sunday: 12pm to 5pm

Touchstone Gallery is located at 901 New York Ave. NW. Please see the gallery’s website www.touchstonegallery.com for additional information, or call 202-347-2787. For more information contact Ksenia Grishkova, Director, 202-347-2787 or email [email protected]

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