Happy New Year, art lovers! The first First Thursday Art Walk of 2018 is upon us, and so it’s time to get to the galleries in Pioneer Square and Downtown Seattle. There is lots to see, and we’re highlighting eight galleries, starting with an immersive experience curated by black womxn.
The Powerful Commentaries at CORE and Prographica/KDR
CORE Gallery hosts multidisciplinary artists and activists for Black Imagination through January 27. Curators include Natasha Marin (Miko Kuro’s Midnight Tea, Reparations.me), poet Imani Sims, writer Amber Flame and performance artist Rachael Ferguson. Other artist participants include Paul Rucker and Stas Thee Boss (Thee Satisfaction). There will be performances throughout the opening, celebrating black joy and wellness. The gallery is only open by appointment this month, so the opening during Art Walk is the absolute best time to come. See more on the website. Closing ritual on January 27.
If you have not made the trip to see Zhi Lin‘s solo exhibition at Tacoma Art Museum, this solo show at Prographica/KDR might be the nudge you need. Lin’s prints and video works meditate on the forgotten (often unwritten) history of the Chinese migrants who built the transcontinental railroad. His placid, watery prints show small sections of the railroad, paired with texts that speak of the harsh conditions, violence and oppression met by the hundreds who struggled and died during construction.
To be precise, 905 laborers are known to have died, and each of their names have been inscribed on individual stones at TAM. These will be planted in Tacoma’s Chinese Reconciliation Park after the exhibit closes on Feb. 18, 2018. If you can’t make the trip to Tacoma, at least don’t miss this show here in Seattle. See more on the Prographica/KDR website. Through January 27.
The Group Shows
December and January are favorite months for gallerists to show work from several represented artists, many of whom will have solo shows in the coming year. Other galleries extend their shows to guest artists through invitationals.
Invitationals at Stonington Gallery and Davidson Galleries
This is the last day to see Stonington Gallery‘s The Sky World Invitational, the last of three annual winter shows addressing different natural realms—from rivers, to the woods, and now to the sky. As usual, the mediums range from sculpture to jewelry to prints to masks and more. The hanging sculptures are particularl strong, including three from Drew Michael (Yup’ik and Inupiaq) and a stunning Red Moon by Robin Rorick (Haida). See more on the website.
Davidson Galleries has its second consecutive invitational show, this time of international mezzotint artists. I always say that Davidson Galleries is a perfect place for new collectors to start looking. The price point of prints is less prohibitive, and they are easy to store when people decide to rotate in new work over time. These international shows that the gallery puts on are especially inspiring, and the subject matter is always incredibly diverse.
I’m. In. Awe of the perfect technique used in the four-plate color print in Peter M. Jogo‘s “Paisely Mac.” Then there’s the somber, velvety chiaroscuro of Jacob Crook’s urban scenes. The simplicity of his image of lights streaming through venetian blinds in “Sleep” belies how temperamental the mezzotint medium actually is. James Groleau‘s grim, mournful works depict hooded and bandaged heads crying out. Each is named after Middle Eastern cities devastated by war. See more on the website. Through January 27.
Gallery Artists at Traver Gallery and Gallery IMA
Traver Gallery‘s inclusion of more work from outside the studio glass world continues apace. Quite a few of the artists i their Winter 2018 Group Show are working in entirely different mediums, such as Jef Gunn‘s encaustics and Lynn Whitford‘s metal and wood assemblage<. Still, gorgeous glass glitters all around, including works by Heike Brachlow, Matthew Szösz, and Lino Tagliopetra. See more on the website. Through January 27.
Gallery IMA continues its winter group exhibition, but will be rotating some of the featured pieces (and filling in the spots of works that sold). In this case, ceramics are the medium of note: exotic, vivid floral forms by Carol Gouthro; sweetly cartoonish cloud vessels by Sam Chung; wriggling raku bottles by Paul Metivier. It’s a lively, motley assortment that feels light and lush at turns. See more on the website. Through January 27.
The Varicolored Landscapes at Foster/White and Linda Hodges
Foster/White Gallery‘s 2018 opener is a group show, but some of the strongest pieces in it work from the landscape in some way. That includes textile panels by Cameron Anne Mason and oil paintings by Chase Langford, Robert Marchessault and Allison Collins. If you squint, even Mark Rediske‘s long, mixed media pieces resemble landscapes…though slightly apocalyptic. See more on the website. Through January 27.
At Linda Hodges Gallery, Elizabeth Gahan gives an otherworldly vibrancy to Seattle’s skylines and beyond. Scenes such as the Volunteer Park Conservatory and Tucson’s Rialto theatre are rendered precisely with graphite or woodburning, then colored with splashes, rings and dollops of paint. A personal fave, “Adorned Ravine,” seems to mash-up Chinese ink paintings with contemporary architectural diagrams. See more on the website. Through January 27.
Last Call for Great Installations at METHOD and CoCA
This is the last art walk to see shows by Julia Freeman at METJOD Galllery and Cathy McClure at CoCA Gallery. The two are just steps from each other on 3rd avenue, so be sure to check out both.
Featured Image: “Teeming” by Elizabeth Gahan. Image courtesy of Linda Hodges Gallery.