Hilary Brace
Images | Biography | Essay | Catalogue

Ann Lofquist
Urban and Pastoral
Images | Biography



October 18 - November 22, 2014

Reception: October 18, 2014 4-6PM

Gallery Talk: November 8, 2014 10AM
RSVP by November 6

In reviewing Hilary Brace's drawings, The New York Times wrote, "once in a while you come across an art of such refined technique that it seems the product of sorcery more than human craft...” Starting with the smooth surface of polyester film darkened with charcoal, Brace works in a reductive manner by removing charcoal with erasers and other handmade tools. Despite the verisimilitude of her work, Brace composes her images without premeditation, through an explorative process that allows them to unfold in unanticipated directions. Her subjects are based on clouds, water, mist and mountains, but she takes these forms to sublime and unimaginable new heights. As Christopher Knight remarked in the Los Angeles Times, her work is “like a Vija Celmins drawing made Baroque, [it] conjures ephemeral poetics of light and space.” For all their vastness and grandeur, Brace’s drawings are relatively small and intimate. As Leah Ollman observed in Art in America, the drawings “put those two realms – the private and the cosmic – within reach of each other.” The naturalist author Gretel Ehrlich also recognized this dichotomy of the wild and the controlled in her essay for this exhibition, “Everything in these frames is spilling, yet it feels contained somehow, not threatening. We are only asked to move in the atmospheric flux. The perspective is from a seat high up, as if the artist was on a cloud passing over and under other clouds, yet always able to define her territory.”

Concurrently, Craig Krull Gallery will present its first exhibition of paintings by Ann Lofquist. Combining the qualities of tonalism with the approach of plein-air painting, Lofquist’s landscapes begin with what she describes as “an intense observed experience.” Having taught for several years at Bowdoin College in Maine, she became recognized for her New England paintings that combined a contemporary visual awareness with the evocative subtleties of George Inness. Her recent move to Southern California presented an entirely different landscape as well as new light and atmospheric conditions that she has perceived remarkably. Bowdoin art professor Mark Wethli says Lofquist is “one of the few I would describe as having perfect pitch when it comes to color, which is unmistakable in the way she captures very fleeting qualities of light.” On her recent subject matter, Lofquist notes, “…new tracts abut a dry landscape still teeming with rattlesnakes, coyotes and mountain lions. The juxtaposition of the enduring and the ephemeral is everywhere in evidence in Southern California.”