Reynolds Gallery to exhibit new works from VCUarts professors

Nick Bonadies
Spectrum Editor

The Reynolds Gallery on West Main Street will open two new solo exhibits this Friday Sept. 17 featuring the work of VCUarts professors.

Carlton Newton, associate professor with the Department of Sculpture & Extended Media, will open his New Work show concurrently with Patina, an exhibition of paintings by Sally Bowring, adjunct assistant professor with the Department of Painting & Printmaking.

Bowring, a New York native who earned her Master’s Degree at VCU, will present recent additions to her catalogue of paintings (all of them perfectly square) utilizing layered “veils of color,” textile-inspired stencil work, and shimmering pastels.

Bowring’s works, which she described as having always been “about arrangement, rather than just gesture,” references garden imagery as a metaphor – “as a place where life and death occur in different cycles.”  Her online artist statement  cites an artistic approach which “(leaves) shapes fragmented and undone – something left out – something to be filled in.  The work gives clues and leaves evidence – providing some kind of visual implication; an insinuation of continuance.”

Newton, who has taught with the VCU Sculpture & Extended Media department since the late eighties, cites among his many influences the enhanced-vision images achieved by modern science -“Electron scanning, microscopy, all the way out to the Hubble telescope in space.”

“All of the images from there have entered into our consciousness, but they’re images that are beyond the range of our natural eye,” he said. “All this is part of our world view, but it’s not accessible to our normal eye.”

Newton’s New Work, in addition to new sculptures in stainless steel wire, wool, and gypsum cement, will feature a number of ink drawings.  “I like the immediate directness of drawing with brush and ink,” said Newton.  “I like the fact that there’s an immediate permanence about it – you can’t go back and redo it or erase it.”

Newton holds to the notion that viewers can only fully immerse themselves in a work of art by seeing it in person.  “There are two ways of knowing – one with the senses, and one with the mind,” he said.  “They are intertwined, but not the same.  Learning to look at art sort of needs to engage them both. … You have to experience art with an act of looking.”

Bowring, who has taught at VCU since 1982 and calls her students “a big part of my audience,” said she looks forward to a big turnout.  “I’m always really thrilled when students come to my shows – and always really interested in what they have to say,” she said.  “And they can be honest –  I’m a new Yorker, I can take it.”

The opening reception for Carlton Newton’s New Work and Sally Bowring’s Patina will be held at the Reynolds Gallery this Friday, September 17th from 7-9pm. Visit the Reynolds Gallery for more information.

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