March 22, 2012—April 28, 2012 | Reception Thursday, March 22nd, 6-8PM
Centered on the theme of the landscape, Mirage explores the practice of five artists, Claire Cowie, Eric Elliott, Marcelino Gonçalves, Will Henry and Mary Ann Peters. It is through their individual works that we see how the landscape is observed, imagined and abstracted.
A mirage is an optical phenomenon in which objects appear or hover over a landscape.
Claire Cowie uses a variety of media to reference the natural world around her home in Seattle, as well as around the world. Cowie utilizes symbols of the natural world such as birds, insects, and a variety of plant-life, as well as heavily using the negative space in a work. By using watercolor and ink in the areas around her subject Cowie references the fragmentation between the natural world and us, as well as of memory. The colors and shapes in her work create dream-like landscapes that pull in characteristics of urban architecture.
Claire Cowie lives and works in Seattle, Washington, where she is a lecturer at the University of Washington. Cowie attended both the North Carolina School of the Arts (Winston-Salem, NC) and Washington University in St. Louis (St. Louis, MO). She received her MFA from the University of Washington (Seattle, WA). Cowie’s work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally, including shows at the Henry Art Gallery (Seattle, WA), Takeda Biennial (Oaxaca, Mexico), Tacoma Art Museum (Tacoma, WA), Frye Art Museum (Seattle, WA), Shenzhen Art Institute (Shenzhen, China) and the Art Gym at Marylhurst University (Lake Oswego, OR). Her work is included in the collections of the Henry Art Gallery (Seattle, WA), Microsoft Corporation (Redmond, WA), Safeco (Seattle, WA), and Tacoma Art Museum (Tacoma, WA), among others.
“I work from the premise that images are never neutral and that they sustain layered meaning from the inception of an idea to the completed piece. Historical narratives, architecture, science, personal heritage, politics and questions of perception have all played a part in my thinking over the years. I look for seemingly disparate elements that can coalesce and redefine a topic. I have traveled extensively, most frequently in non-Western cultures. Traveling has informed my understanding of the global roots of aesthetics. It consistently defines for me those social practices that provide outlines for cultural inquiry, including which ethical questions should be considered or supported. In the end I work to the afterimage of the viewer and the potential discourse that might ensue. The kiss of death for any artist is the work that no one can remember.”
- Mary Ann Peters
Mary Ann Peters lives and works in Seattle, WA She received an MFA from the University of Washington in 1978. She has received numerous awards including an Art Matters Foundaton Grant, New York that allowed her to travel to Paris and Mexico City to research the migration from the Middle East after World War II, a grant from The New Foundation, Seattle in 2014, a MacDowell Fellowship in 2010, a Jentel residency in 2009, the Northwest Institute of Architecture & Urban Studies in Italy (NIAUSI) residency in 2003 and the Neddy Fellowship from the Behnke Foundation in 2000. Collections include Microsoft, Seattle Art Museum, 4Culture, Tacoma Art Museum, and others.
Eric Elliott is a Seattle artist working within the mediums of painting and drawing on both large and small scale. His works use light as an object and his paintings have an impasto effect that he uses as a kind of artistic filter in his work. Elliott focuses on recognizable subjects, many referencing the natural world and abstracts them through the use of this filter as well as his unique use of light and color. Elliott’s artistic process continues to develop as he continues to experiment with a variety of techniques and scales in his work.
Eric Elliott currently lives and works in Seattle, WA. He has had five solo exhibitions at James Harris Gallery, as well as displaying in a variety of group shows around the country. Currently Elliott is a professor at Colorado Mesa University.