June 7th marks the arrival of a new exhibit at the Moraga Art Gallery. The show’s title, “Experiments and Explorations,” suggests adventurous efforts by artists who take risks and follow less-traveled creative roads searching for unpredictable results that expand viewers’ sense of the possible in art and yet, satisfy their craving for the familiar.
Patrick Hayashi is the exhibit’s main featured artist. Now a MAG member, he took up art after retiring from UC thirteen years ago. Thinking at the time that art mastery was beyond reach, he decided to explore various media and styles. He ventured successfully into oil and watercolor painting, probed semi-abstract monotypes, and created “Zencaustics,” a personal variety of encaustics— i.e, melted beeswax. He also expanded his repertoire into printmaking, etching, and drawing in graphite, ink, and silverpoint. What turned out to be his tour de force, however, are “smoke paintings.” Using a technique he developed and perfected, Hayashi applies smoke from burning wooden matches to create striking and beguiling images on paper.
Along with Hayashi’s work, the exhibit features ceramics by guest artists Lauri-Moffet Fehlberg and Kurt Fehlberg, both professional architects. Lauri combines wheel-thrown porcelain with hand built components, creating richly textured and colorful forms of unconventional beauty. When Kurt sits at the wheel. the clay is free to express forms in a more fluid, spirited fashion. The vessels formed are often altered into Figurative sculptures rather than traditional functional pottery.
Linda Yoshizawa is another guest artist. Her artwork blends two cultural sensibilities—American and Japanese. Having learned at an early age the symbolism of haiku and Zen proverbs, she creates monotypes in which elements of nature serve as metaphors for the human condition. Linda uses water-soluble ink rolled over a thin line drawing of printing oil that acts like a resist and enables her to depict foliage and other delicate shapes in a decidedly spiritual cast. Lately, she has printed editions of collagraphs, made solar plate etchings, and experimented with printing on silk.
The gallery’s fourteen member artists will also have paintings, photographs, ceramics, jewelry and finely-crafted woodware on display during the entire show, which runs until August 12th.
The public is invited to the Opening Reception on Saturday, June 10th from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. Use the occasion to meet the artists, sip a glass of wine accompanied by light snacks and live music.
The gallery is located in the Rheem Shopping Center, at 522 Center Street, Moraga. Normal hours are Wednesday through Sunday, 12:00 noon to 5:00 PM. The show runs from June 7 through August 12. Call 925 376-5407 for more details. Like us on Facebook!