Opening Reception - As Above, So Below

Press Release:

As Above, So Below…

WHAT:  Exhibition featuring exquisite new oil paintings by Karen Owsley Nease from Duluth, MN. 

Opening Reception:  Thursday, October 5, 2017, 5-7pm
Exhibition dates:  October 4 – October 26 2017.

WHERE:  Kruk Gallery, University of Wisconsin – Superior, Holden Fine and Applied Arts Center 2144 Catlin Ave. & 19th St. Superior, WI 54880

Superior, Wisconsin  - The Kruk Gallery, University of Wisconsin – Superior is proud to present As Above, So Below.  The exhibition features a new body of artwork from Karen Owsley Nease’s, wave portrait Series.   Exquisitely painted, and dramatic, these oil paintings portray the waves as powerful, elemental forces.  They are monochromatic in palette, ranging in size from small studies to the full size of a wave.   The breaking multi-faceted waves create strong patterns of light and dark drawing the viewer towards the surface.  As Ann Landi describes, “ … this artist builds up her pictures in glazes until the surface reaches a seductive luminosity. “

Karen Owsley Nease is a contemporary landscape painter whose “…seascape painting draws from the traditions of Western landscape painting, and subverts those traditions as firmly as it refers to them. By doing so it encourages us to retune our way of perceiving the non-human world which surrounds and supports us,” states Ruth Henriquez.  Throughout her career, Nease’s artwork has sought to extend the meaning of landscape beyond the Western European tradition.  She achieves this by presenting the untamed force of the waters with no reference to humans whatsoever except for the viewer’s own reaction to their powerlessness and awe.   Her paintings present the forces of nature as entities in their own right, inviting the viewer to see the subject in new ways.
Nease's artwork has reference points in her own efforts toward habitat restoration, American transcendentalist landscape painting and the work of more recent artists such as Neil Welliver, April Gornik and Vija Celmins who are similarly engaged with both the landscape and its use as subject matter for formalist experimentation.  Almost photo-realistic when viewed from afar, the paintings become more painterly and abstract as one approaches.  From the catalog essay by Ann Landi, “the Wave series keeps viewer pleasurably off balance, flirting with abstraction…”

Karen Owsley Nease, artist, states, “I am absolutely thrilled at the opportunity to introduce this new and ongoing series of artwork to the Northland.  The Kruk Gallery is an ideal space to present my large scale wave paintings and it is very important to me that this work can be seen at such a lovely space at University of Wisconsin – Superior,  whose programs play an important role in the protection of Lake Superior which is so nearby.”   There will be an accompanying exhibition catalog featuring essays by Ruth Henriquez and Ann Landi.
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