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New Exhibits Launch Today at Hopkins Arts Center

'Artful Vessels' by Pratibha Gupta and 'Between Drawing and Painting' by John Wells will be on display through Feb. 26, along with 'Horizons: Paintings by Julia Helen Rice' and 'Photographs by Robert Glieden.'

(The following announcements come from the )

Artful Vessels: Ceramics by Pratibha Gupta and Between Drawing and Painting: Recent work by John Wells will be on view at the Hopkins Center for the Arts beginning January 26th.  Both artists' work involves merging painting with another art form. Gupta combines ceramics and painting, while Wells manipulates the process of drawing and painting.

Pratibha Gupta’s work is inspired by Japanese and Korean ceramics.  She says, “Picasso’s work in ceramics, which is extremely painterly, has also been an important influence. My work explores the merging of ceramics and painting, forms and designs. Sometimes the sketchbook leads to the form of the pot; sometimes the form of the pot leads to the design. The balance of the two is what makes the work unique. I like to work with human figures, because it is the human experience that is the source of our knowledge. Music is also a strong theme in my work, including Indian folk musicians and instruments.

I strive for my work to be both useful as well as aesthetically interesting. This allows for not only function but also beauty to become a part of people’s daily living. The usefulness of the bowl lies in it being empty. Only then can it be filled with anything. For me, this is akin to spirituality. Only when we are empty of ego, can grace fill us. Vacuum is all potent because it is all containing.”

Between Drawing and Painting will include three forms of John Wells’ work. His non objective abstract paintings begin with composition using geometric forms. He says, “My process employs the application and removal of paint and materials, within isolated layers, in predetermined geometric structures. Though contained, the colors and materials within these forms are often erratic and self determining. It is the interplay between control and randomness that builds the language of each piece.”

His minimalist paintings begin without a predetermined composition. They evolve as a natural outcome of his search for greater simplicity and abandonment of the structure evident in much of his other work. Color and texture dominates these pieces.

Wells describes the third form as “’Between Drawing and Painting.’ My process has generally begun with drawing to outline ideas and form compositions before the application of paint. More recently, I have begun to reconsider the relationship between drawing and painting. To further increase my understanding about his relationship, I have begun new work that reverses the traditional process. These works begin with the application of paint and end with drawing. I continue to learn through the process and enjoy the outcome of the work.”

Horizons: Paintings by Julia Helen Rice and Photographs by Robert Glieden will also be on view at the Hopkins Center for the Arts beginning January 26th.  

Julia Helen Rice states, “There is in my work, first of all, a philosophy of opposites and of the edges that exist between two opposites... That edge is where all the excitement happens and all the drama. This philosophy has led me to become deeply interested in the edges between any number of opposites or dualities and when looking at the natural world I am most fascinated by horizon lines. It is at the horizon line in a landscape that the qualities of that landscape are most perceptible because at the horizon the opposite of solid ground and open air meet. . . I have tried to create a sensation of depth in my work through a vast amount of sky and only a small amount of ground. I find that the weight of the sky presses down on the terribly fine line of the horizon and makes it more poignant and, hopefully, creates an impression of overwhelming space. My paintings arise out of that tension between the two opposite experience of celebration and mundanity.”

Horizons also play a strong role in Robert Glieden’s photographs.  He says, “The photographs I make contain common rural landscapes that go unnoticed. I use black and white photography to turn ordinary Minnesotan scenes into images that demand attention. I believe less is more - my photography reflects this concept.”  Using familiar sights such as tree lines, lonely highways, and fences, Glieden’s photographs convey a haunting sense of place and a feeling of untold stories. 

Both exhibits run through Feb. 26. The opening reception will be Thursday, January 26th from 6-8 pm. The reception, like the exhibitions, is open and free-of-charge to the public. Gallery hours are 8 am-8pm Monday-Friday, 10am-8 pm Saturday and noon-5pm Sunday

This exhibition is part of an ongoing series of free public exhibitions at the Hopkins Center for the Arts.  The Hopkins Center for the Arts welcomed over 210,000 visitors last year and is a focal point for arts, education, and entertainment in the center of downtown Hopkins.  The Arts Center builds community through the arts by fostering creative expression and providing artistic and educational opportunities for people of all ages.   For more information go to www.hopkinsartscenter.com.

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