Tobias Bernardi

ARTswell

Art Review

Tobias BernardiGallery Route One, May 11-June 14 The visual poetry of Geraldine Liabraten is an exhibition of urban photographs, coupled with contrasting writing by well-known authors such as Robert Frost, Henry David Thoreau, T.S. Eliot, Elizabeth Bishop, Jane Hirschfield, Langston Hughes, Omar Khayam, Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Also the Bible. The oblique relationship between the quotes and the close-up images of walls, lights and other objects presents objects for thought. Her work forces us to see light and shadow, diagonal lines and patterns that we miss if we do not look closely at things. This is the first time she has engaged with poetry. Sometimes the images came first and sometimes the poetry. The result is a success that deserves sustained viewing. Liabraten says, “Things are not necessarily how they appear…my intent is to make the viewer wonder what this is.”

In Gallery Route One’s Project Space/With the Earth Gallery, two artists share the space for Disappearing Act: Our Role in Species Extinction. Marie-Luise Klotz’s work is concerned with bees and the colony collapse disorder over the past eight years. This is an urgent threat to plant life, agriculture and our food. Her sepia-toned photographs are covered with gold and presented on black backgrounds. They beautifully depict bees, almonds, seeds, flowers, raspberries and a stalk of broccoli, all equally endangered. Klotz tells us “I want to imply that something so seemingly mundane as the honeybee is something that we should value as much as gold…” One wall of the space has a shelf holding a 30-foot book of stencil paintings by Xander Weaver-Scull of turtles, lizards and birds. His process starts with free hand drawings with markers on acetate that he then cuts out shapes. The stencils are then spray-painted on the paper or hand-painted in watercolor and ink. The GRO Annex Gallery shows Suzanne Parker’s small painted photographs. The photographs serve as a beginning for paintings that move from exterior views to interior views of thoughts and feelings. These exhibitions will close with a salon at 4 pm on Sunday, June15. GRO is open daily except Tuesday, 11-5. Spring Art Show, May 10-18. As I entered the gallery at the San Geronimo Valley Community Center I was greeted by a colorful group of paintings by Anne Faught covering one panel. On another wall was a highly textured painting of fish by Tobias Bernardi. And in the other room of this annual spring show of work by over 100 artists who live in the San Geronimo Valley was an entire wall of big colorful paintings in different styles and techniques by Sherry Petrini, Harry Cohen, Deanna Pedroli and Alexandra Adeir. Among the smaller paintings Barbara McLain’s oil painting, Solo Performance, stands out. Oils and watercolors were predominant but there were some fine pastels by Sandy White of a very relaxed pig, and Connie Smith Siegel of a flowering plum, one of her recurring themes. An unusual tile work was Animal Nature by Justine Tot Tatarsky. This was a show for everyone who lives there, and for everyone who wanted to see a variety of artistic creativity in all media. As there was no theme to this exhibition I cannot comment on its meaning other than to say what I found interesting on the afternoon that I visited the gallery. In addition to the paintings there were a number of fine prints. I enjoyed the lifesize faces of Fred Berensmeier’s Coho Creation Dance, a collagraph; Elan Kamesar’s untitled stone lithograph; Jean Berensmeir’s linoleum block print of formalist images of the torso, Physical Therapist’s Delight in Stability; Geoff Bernstein’s serigraph, Rio de Janiero; and Dan Getz Corporate What? a beautifully made image with 12 cubicles in perspective containing shirts, collars and ties. An intriguing mixed media work by Gaetano de Felice showed a predatory bird flying through silhouetted trees at sunset. The exhibition offered a number of mixed media works and assemblage and only one traditional carved sculpture, Pele, an earthwoman of alabaster by Cornelia Nevitt. This show deserved a much longer run so that more people could have seen the creative work being done in the valley.

Art People

Inez Storer is having a solo show, Hidden Agencies, at the Gail Severn Gallery in Ketchum, Idaho, May 21- June 27. Emmeline Craig’s painting graces the May cover of In Marin Magazine.

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