Tag Archives: painting

Sally Davies: “Global Views: Light & Shadow”

During her travels, artist Sally Davies observed people of different cultures doing what people of all cultures do: going about their daily lives. She watched and documented from unique perspectives and vantage points, photographing people under the dramatic evening shadows of the glass pyramid of the Louvre in Paris, or the long morning shadows off of the medieval Sforza Castle in Milan. Davies then went back into the studio and translated what she saw onto canvas. Coupled with hints of architecture and dramatic lighting and shadows, the collection “Global Views: Light & Shadow” came together – a series of paintings that demonstrate the common bond of humanity that we share around the globe, regardless of culture or place.

“Global Views” refers to both the high-up vantage point of the artist and viewer, and the many countries represented in this collection. “Aside from recognizable architectural clues for a specific place, the people in my paintings look and feel so familiar. They are doing ordinary things, like going to work, taking kids to school, cycling home, and meeting with friends. “Global Views” shows our planet as one whole place, a community. The image of a mother holding her child’s hand while crossing the street is universal. I want to show that bond of humanity throughout the world.”

When photographing and piecing together her images, Davies looks for a dynamic composition, interesting play of light and shadow, intriguing characters, and a suggestion of architectural details. She begins with an abstract under-painting on a blank canvas – swirls and patterns with lots of movement. In the final works, only a hint of the abstract under-painting remains visible. The result is a strong, uncluttered design – always from a bird’s eye view.

About the artist: Davies was born in England and immigrated to Canada as a young girl. She studied illustration and graphic design at Sheridan College in Canada and has illustrated magazines, cookbooks, menus, posters, textbooks, and many children’s books. Her illustrations are done with ink line and bright watercolor washes and are very different from her fine art paintings, which tend to be looser in style. Over the past 15 years, Davies has shifted her interest to exhibiting her fine art paintings in various galleries in the mid-Atlantic region. She’s a member of The Art League and a signature member of Baltimore Watercolor Society and the Potomac Valley Watercolorists.

Michael Fischerkeller: The Art of Politics

Through a street art aesthetic, artist Michael Fischerkeller offers a commentary on today’s political, economic, and social issues. His stark yet elegant paintings span large canvases, the size and weight consistent with the gravity of the issues to which they speak. Using acrylic spray paint, a street artist’s medium, Fischerkeller boldly and symbolically relays his message, as the “street” is most often and most deprived of social justice. Fischerkeller’s timely exhibit, “The Art of Politics,” will be on display in The Art League Gallery September 7–October 2, 2016.

After a period of reading-based meditation followed by a purchase of street art, Fischerkeller, who holds a PhD in Political Science, discovered that visual art was the most effective means for him to communicate today’s complex social and humanitarian issues, and ultimately, the best way for him to motivate social change among a wide audience.

Fischerkeller is not interested in commenting on political personalities, but rather on issues. He seeks to capture and represent a shared social conscience through beauty, satire, and whimsy. By referencing humanist values such as integrity, humility, compassion, selflessness, and responsibility, he seeks to convey that issues including homelessness, climate change, and equality are relevant to all regardless of political affiliation.”

His works are full of symbolism, from his choice of medium, size of canvas, to each entity in his compositions. Imagery of the feminine from past-centuries fine art masters is appropriated and embedded into Fischerkeller’s work, eluding to the imbalance between the feminine and masculine in society which he believes is a root cause of many of the issues being faced today.

Fischerkeller holds a BA and M.Phil. from the University of Pittsburgh and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the Ohio State University. He is a self-taught artist, having developed his own technique through the use of digital image manipulation, stencils, and acrylic spray paint. Fischerkeller found his way into the visual arts just three years ago, and has already found wide spread success. His work has been shown throughout the United States in group and solo exhibitions. He’s currently a member of The Art League, the Torpedo Factory Artists Association, and the Washington Project for the Arts.

Kathleen Best Gillmann: “Vision at Water’s Edge”

Exhibit dates: Wednesday, July 6–Sunday, August 7
Opening Reception: Thursday, July 14, 6:30–8:00 pm

About the artist: Kathleen Best Gillmann, a native of southern Maine, says she found her artist’s voice when she began painting waterscapes inspired by that area. Today, her paintings have expanded to include scenes from Virginia and elsewhere. Gillmann describes herself as “a contemporary realist with a deep love and sensitivity to color, light, and the natural world.” Whether painting in acrylic or oil, Gillmann’s works manage to capture the strange stillness of fog or the luminosity of a clear day, and her works are notable for the deep sense of wonder and calm they instill in the viewer.

Alex Tolstoy: “Watermarks”

Exhibit dates: Wednesday, June 8–Sunday, July 3
Opening Reception: Thursday, June 9, 6:30–8:00 pm

About the artist: Alex Tolstoy is interested in water, whether it is the calm water of the reflecting pool or the vast and agitated sea, “in the center of a city or by a beach.” Her style and approach to using watercolor reflects her subject: Tolstoy’s works often look as if they were splashed upon the page, with blooms of pigment and edge that often look like tidemarks. Tolstoy’s subjects range from the readily identifiable, like the Lincoln Monument reflected in the Potomac, to the nearly abstract, open to interpretation.

Nancy McIntyre: “Rhythms of Time”

Nancy McIntyre’s silkscreens and paintings “treasure the local, the small-scale, the eccentric, the ordinary.” Her solo show, “Rhythms of Time,” focuses on different scenes over varying periods of time—over the course of a day, or across decades. Some of the places have hardly changed; others are almost unrecognizable. The silkscreening process is particularly suited to McIntyre’s focus on the passage of time: some of her more complicated pieces can comprise a hundred layers and take up to a year.

Gallery hours:
Monday–Saturday: 10:00 am–6:00 pm
Thursday: 10:00 am–9:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 noon-6:00 pm

Fritz Desroches: “The Caribbean – How Beautiful”

Exhibit dates: Wednesday, March 9–Sunday, April 3, 2016
Opening Reception: Thursday, March 10, 6:30–8:00 pm

Fritz Desroches’s airbrushed works highlight Caribbean culture, particularly Haiti. His style is unique, and his work is full of color, movement, and happiness. According to Desroches, “although Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, its people are resilient and very friendly.” With his work, Desroches shows off both vibrant examples of daily activities and traditional elements of Haitian art.

Sheila Harrington: “Each Day is a Celebration”

“The cyclical changes of life, how human beings respond to them, and the juxtaposition of the natural and the man-made, fascinate me, and I can’t help drawing and painting them.”

Sheila Harrington illustrates the passage of time in her oil paintings of subtly seasonal food and drink. She works on a small scale, so the works can be completed before her models perish.

  • Opening Reception: Thursday, October 8, 6:30-8:00 pm

Leslie Nolan: Beyond the Edge

Combining confident, bold, expressive brushwork with vibrant color, artist Leslie Nolan has created a series of portraits bursting with raw emotion. Her assertive yet loose brushstrokes simultaneously create and obscure the figure, as she strives to portray “what is felt, rather than what is seen.”

“Beyond the Edge,” Nolan’s solo exhibit of contemporary portrait paintings, will be featured at The Art League Gallery October 9–November 3, 2014.

See the exhibit page for details.