Raised Voices

Raised Voices

The titles of the works in Voicings, City Gallery’s new art show, are rich enough to make funny poems out of. Here’s a haiku using five of them:

Whorl Out of the Box.
Twist and Shout Ancient Musings.
Tickle My Fancy.

And it’s a surprisingly apt summation of the goings-on. Bringing together “unique voices,” not to achieve thematic or stylistic cohesion but rather to present an array of “visual counter-points,” Voicings has plenty of out-of-the-box creation going on, with twists on approaches and techniques, at least one of which is very old. It also has shouts of ink and color, plus work that’s fanciful and likable.

sponsored by

The Quinnipiac River Fund

A social worker for about 30 years but “always” an artist, Meg Bloom is the sculptor among the four co-exhibitors, using intensive paper-making processes—including joomchi, an “ancient Korean technique” involving pressing and rolling fibers with her hands, forearms and sometimes even feet—to produce highly textured, often very organic-feeling forms, hanging not just on City Gallery’s walls but also from its ceiling. Phyllis Crowley is the photographer of the group, creating robust archival pigment prints inspired by the orientational power of horizons, plus a mischievous desire to flip the script. Former hand-painted fashion-maker Kathy Kane is now an abstract fine arts painter, lately stripping the endeavor down to one of visual art’s most basic building blocks—the line—in black and white on 12”x12” canvases, but upping the ante by arraying those canvases in a nonlinear, non-square presentation. Lifelong professional artist Karen Wheeler has created wild, whimsical ink drawings and paintings by hand, then wrapped them around digital 3D objects and environments in Photoshop “to create hybrid images that could exist no other way.”

Opened yesterday—the official opening reception is tonight, from 5 to 7—abstraction wins the day in Voicings, but there’s real content in play, too. Otherwise the piece titles wouldn’t be any good for making haikus.

Voicings at City Gallery
featuring new work by Meg Bloom, Phyllis Crowley, Kathy Kane and Karen Wheeler
994 State St, New Haven (map)
Thurs-Sun 12-4pm or by appointment, through August 2
(203) 782-2489

Written and photographed by Dan Mims with the exceptions of photos #5 and #10, provided courtesy of City Gallery.

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