Jeff Schnabel & Jill Torberson

Showing in the Main Gallery,  January 29-February 24
Artists Talk on Saturday, February 14, starting at 2 pm

Jeff Schnabel, encaustic.mixed media

Jeff Schnabel, encaustic.mixed media

Jeff Schnabel’s work is primarily encaustic.  Materials for individual pieces include steel, acrylic plate, canvas and charcoal. This Fall while seeking direction for new work, Jill Torberson suggested a trip to a nearby kayak museum.  The wood frames stretched with natural skins were elegant and efficient means for allowing individuals to move from place to place. We both fell in love with their forms and their craft.  Out of the corner of my eye I noticed a suspended square lattice with shells placed at the intersection of the individual sticks.  This object turned out to be a rebbelib, which is a map used by the natives of the Marshall Islands to move from island to island using ocean currents as their guides.  I was moved by the marks and landmarks that humans use in order to find their way.  This show reflects my desire to make objects that reference various forms of navigation, both real and imagined.

Jill Torberson "Bottle in a Boat" mixed media

Jill Torberson “Bottle in a Boat” mixed media

Jill Torberson is a steel worker and mixed media artist. For the upcoming show at the Guardino Gallery, she and her frequent collaborator Jeff Schnabel will be looking at the theme of “Navigation.” Navigation is defined as any skill or thought process that involves the determination of position and direction. Jill is working with the ideas about transportation, as well as navigating the path of emotions and the heart. One segment of the work is influenced by images of canoe building diagrams from England dating from the 1700’s. These pieces are welded steel and acrylic. Other steel and mixed media sculptures take many forms, some from modes of transportation. Jill will be making free standing outdoor sculpture, as well as wall pieces and indoor sculptural work.

Bryn Harding & Kate Saunders

Showing in the Feature Area, January 29-February 22

Bryn Harding, Gratitude" Intaglio print

Bryn Harding, Gratitude” Intaglio print

Bryn Harding has recently been creating portraits of people, real and imagined.  These portraits force a viewer to look inward when confronted with the “self” gazing back at them. The portraits are open vehicles that invite viewers to project narrative, emotion and meaning onto them. As the figures evolve they become vehicles for reflection and questioning. In the end each piece is a cocreation between the artist and the materials. These recent works focus on questions of identity, place, and the role that history plays in out lives.  To quote Bryn “Intaglio printmaking is the perfect medium for working in this way. The process takes a long time and the copper often seems to fight back against my plans. The time, work, and patience required by this medium provide the space needed to reflect on image making. I mix my own inks, make my own grounds, stopouts and lifts. Through a combination of old and new techniques, rich surfaces and textures are created; areas of abstraction and pattern that juxtapose and support representational figures. Each piece is, at least in part, a celebration of the medium.”

Kate Saunders, "Les Trois Freres Animals" glass

Kate Saunders, “Les Trois Freres Animals” glass

Kate Saunders is a glass artist that has been fascinated by cave art, both pictographs and petroglyphs. and so cave art was one of the first things she turned to when she began to do fused glass almost 20 years ago.  According to Kate: “Although I take liberties with the colors used in my pieces, the lines of my images are  much the same as they were when they were first painted onto cave walls thousands of years ago. I think that certain fused glass techniques can evoke perfectly to the look and feel of cave art and I have often wondered what the original artists would think if they saw their images in glass, if something of the same power and magic might still come through in a medium so different from, yet fundamentally related to, rock and stone. At present, my work involves using frit and mica to compose images that acknowledge both the simplicity and complexity of natural and primitive forms.  At the same time, because glass as a medium can possess transparency and translucency, I try to not allow my images to dominate their glass background, but rather be part of a dynamic dialog between positive and negative space.”