Show Preview | The Spell of Light & Shadows

Denver, CO
Arts at Denver, October 14-November 8

Mike Natale, Yellow Flowers, oil, 24 x 24.

Mike Natale, Yellow Flowers, oil, 24 x 24.

This story was featured in the October 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art October 2014 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!

In Arts at Denver’s group show entitled The Spell of Light and Shadows: Still Lifes & Interiors, subjects range from a bowl of fruit to a coffee shop to loaves of bread. Gallery owner Paula Colette Conley has invited all 35 gallery artists to participate and to let their imaginations and creativity flow in many directions. “We expect to hang approximately 50 new works from as many as 25 artists,” she says. Participating artists include Sheri Farabaugh, Mikael Olson, Mike Natale, Sarah L. Lewis, and Teresa Vito, and works range from the detailed and mysterious pieces of Jeremiah J. White to the classical realism of Michael DeVore, the colorful impressionism of Jody Rigsby and Margaretta Caesar, and the painterly pieces of E. Melinda Morrison.

The works are on view beginning October 14, three days before the official opening of the show on October 17. An artists’ reception is on the 17th from 5 to 8 p.m., and all works remain on exhibit through November 8.

Michael DeVore anticipates showing one painting he created in Sweden over the summer—a work that features red currant berries on a bush in the yard next to his father-in-law’s house—alongside three other works including BOWL OF EGGS and FRESH LOAVES. The latter painting was inspired by a trip to a bakery, where he noticed a huge loaf of bread on display and was struck by not only its size but how beautiful the scor-ed pattern and dusting of flour looked on the dark crust. “When I finally decided to do the painting, I had to special-order a whole loaf because they typically cut it up for sale,” he says. “I also began to notice how unique the different types of bread were in terms of size, shape, and tone and realized that I could do an entire still life with only different types of bread.”

Interior scenes really get E. Melinda Morrison’s juices flowing. She’s showing at least one painting created in Italy as well as paintings of musicians playing in a bar and kitchen scenes. “I enjoy kitchen paintings because there’s always a lot of action going on,” she says. “I often take my acrylic paints to restaurants, so I can do studies and sketches on site. Even though most commercial kitchens look similar, I’ve actually had clients recognize specific restaurants in my paintings.” Morrison’s painting DID SOMEONE SAY WALK?—which depicts a brown-and-white whippet perched on a colorful rug in wide-eyed anticipation—is also part of the show.

Jeremiah J. White, Memory, oil, 9 x 12.

Jeremiah J. White, Memory, oil, 9 x 12.

Among Jeremiah J. White’s three or more oil paintings in the show is MEMORY, which features a cloth napkin in an antique glass goblet, a silver creamer, and a scattering of yellow rose petals. “I like going to antique stores to look for objects,” he explains. “When I look at older items, I think about what sorts of memories they hold for the people who previously possessed them. They could have been used for birthday celebrations or for giving toasts. I’ll wonder about these things when I’m working on a painting.”

“These artists all have their own very personal styles of painting,” says Conley, “and it is truly fascinating to see what they produce and how our collectors respond to their works.” —Emily Van Cleve

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Featured in the October 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
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