Touchstone Gallery Presents Figure 8 Plus 1

By Editorial Team on March 2, 2016

Fri, 04 March 2016 - Sun, 27 March 2016

Antiguan Drummer by April M. Rimpo. Courtesy of Touchstone Gallery.
Antiguan Drummer by April M. Rimpo. Courtesy of Touchstone Gallery.


Opening Reception: Friday, March 4 from 6pm to 8:30pm
Meet the Artists: Saturday, March 19 from 2pm to 4pm

Eight Touchstone Gallery 2D-artists plus one sculptor combine their works to flesh out the human form through photography, sculpture, and paintings ranging from the abstracted to representational.

Steve Alderton’s “Paris Portraits” series includes representations of subjects (in this case geishas) that are stripped down to the essential characteristics. Subjects rendered impressionistic in paints transcend the merely visual to reveal what Alderton believes is the human essence: form and spirit.

Dana Brotman’s figurative paintings focus on “the gaze.” The subjects appear to be looking both faraway and inward simultaneously. It is the tension between this “looking out” and “looking in” that draws the viewer into Brotman’s work. For her pieces in Figure 8 Plus 1, Brotman utilizes the tones and textures of cardboard (the side of a refrigerator box, a cut-out square of a cereal carton) as her canvas to hold and interact with the painted images.

Timothy Johnson is stepping away from his traditional approach of incorporating humor and vivid color to his portrait and figure painting in this exhibit. In this short series of work the figure has become just that, anonymous and somber. The lively brush work is present, but the overall palette is more narrow and muted.

Michael Lang is a street photographer who, in this exhibit, expresses the museum experience through photographs at the MOMA in NY. One photograph contrasts order among the museum visitors as they view the art display on the upper level versus randomness on the lower level, lacking an art display to organize them.

Paula Lantz portrays parts of the “human condition” in her large, abstracted figures. Using the energy of intense color and collage combined in her gestural figures, Lantz is able to reflect mysteries in our emotional and spiritual life.

Painted stories is what you’ll find in Shelley Lowenstein’s energetic and colorful paintings of people engaged in the casual interactions of everyday life, from city streets to rustic countryside. She focuses on gesture and body language, and delights in capturing the relationships between her figures both physically and emotionally.

Exploring the variety of people and cultures around the world has been a fascination of April M. Rimpo throughout her life. Her paintings in Figure 8 Plus 1 use color and textures either to express her emotional response to the people or to capture the action that first caught her attention and inspired her to share the emotion she sensed in her subject.

The ceramic sculptures of expressionist artist Janathel Shaw touch on national and universal themes, including equality, self-actualization, anti-bigotry, spiritual examination, and feminist distress. Her pieces are bold, weighty, a little disconcerting, and reflective, providing “food for thought” of what is occurring in our society.

Gail Vogels multi-media work juxtaposes objects of nature and architecture with the figure in an attempt to show us the everyday world in new and unfamiliar ways. The work tells a story of the beautiful and the temporary and seeks to remind people that there are still many mysteries in this life.

Touchstone Gallery is located at 901 New York Ave. NW. Please see the gallery’s website for additional information.