Show Preview | Wanderlust

Kirkland, WA
Howard/Mandville Gallery, May 12-June 4

Roger Dale Brown, Finale of Light, oil, 18 x 36.

Roger Dale Brown, Finale of Light, oil, 18 x 36.

This story was featured in the May 2017 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art  May 2017 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

When the itch to wander beckons, artists answer the summons with the spirit of an explorer and the anticipation of discovery. This month more than 50 leading North American painters celebrate wanderlust-inspired art in an invitational landscape exhibition at Howard/Mandville Gallery in downtown Kirkland, WA. The show opens with a reception on Friday, May 12, at 5 p.m. All paintings are sold on a first-come, first-served basis. “The artists are all highly regarded and have an established following,” gallery co-owner Pat Howard says of the show’s esteemed roster, which includes Joseph Alleman, Lynn Boggess, Brent Cotton, Douglas Fryer, Jim McVicker, and Andrew Skorut. “It should be a phenomenal show.”

The exhibition pays homage to traditional representations of the landscape, but each artist brings one or more new works that showcase his or her signature vision and style, from impressionism to contemporary realism. And as Romona Youngquist points out, everyone’s concept of wanderlust is different. For the Oregon-based artist, whose studio overlooks a sprawling vineyard in Dundee’s lush wine country, the urge to wander doesn’t call for a passport. “For most people, the show’s theme probably means traveling far away to see different things, but my wanderlust is kind of boring,” she says, chuckling at the irony. “I love wandering around my area, finding new roads, taking drives, seeing new farms.”

One of Youngquist’s local plein-air excursions last summer set the scene for her sizable studio painting NEARBY FARM, in which thick, violet-tinged thunderheads hover over a clamorous field of wild red poppies. Against the horizon, a farmhouse hides snugly behind a canopy of leafy trees. “If I happen upon the right scene with the right light,” she says, “I’m inspired.”

Inspiration is nearby, too, for Seattle native Michael Ferguson, who finds endless appeal in the rugged beauty of the Cascade Mountains. “The visual drama here never gets old for me,” says Ferguson, whose plein-air studies inform his larger, contemporary-style studio works. SUMMIT CHIEF TARN, one of three alpine scenes he brings, depicts a luminous mountain lake in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, an area the artist has hiked for years. “This little tarn is so charming, with the lighting in the sky nicely reflected in it,” he says. “My lifetime of hiking in these mountains has given me decades of rich memories that continue to fuel my art.”

Stunning landscapes in farther-flung corners of the world are not overlooked, and artists like impressionistic realist painter Kyle Stuckey celebrate them with equal thrill. Last year the seasoned globe-trotter spent two months traveling and painting in Italy. His studio work VIEW FROM TIVOLI was inspired by a visit to the historic hillside town overlooking Rome. “It was just one of those perfect days, as though everything was in harmony,” he says, recalling the peace he felt. The wanderlust theme hits home for Stuckey, a New Hampshire native who today resides in Charleston, SC. “I like to see what other artists see in the world and what excites them,” he says, “and how each individual artist decides to tell their story about that place.” —Kim Agricola

contact information
425.889.8212
www.howardmandville.com

This story was featured in the May 2017 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art  May 2017 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.

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