Working with grease pencil, oil paints, graphite and colored pencil on a variety of found paper, Kris Hargis' evocative self-portraits and haunting still-lifes featured in Inside Out
are imbued with a paradoxical forceful gentleness. A deeply personal artist, Hargis’ paintings and drawings summon inner-demons and psychic struggles, but address universal themes of isolation and redemption. Spontaneous and immediate, his images emerge as if from the ether; tremulous skeins describe the forms while diaphanous veils of color define faces, ears and the piercing gaze of the artist. Hargis’ still-lifes are poignant and symbolic; delicate flowers cling to decaying stems illustrating the beautiful/ugly dichotomy of life itself.
The Red Striped Cup, Jeremy Longstreet’s most recent exhibit of still life paintings, displays a sublime reverence for tradition and technical virtuosity. Longstreet’s use of everyday objects and uncluttered arrangements are entirely calculated. While attempting to capture their physical nature, he strips the objects of any context or meaning. A bottle is a transparent cylinder; a wooden box is an opaque cube; the painting is a painting. When the object disappears and the forms surface only then does the elegance and sophistication of the painting become apparent.