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Artists explore line and color in Washington County Arts Council exhibit

Artists explore line and color in Washington County Arts Council exhibit

November 13, 2008|By TIFFANY ARNOLD

Tornadoes might be an ideal subject for an impatient artist.

"I get impatient and work really quickly," said artist Kate Keely, who will display pieces from her abstract "Tornado Series" at the Washington County Arts Council's dual artist exhibition, "Line and Color."

The exhibit opens Friday, Nov. 14. An opening reception is set for Saturday, Nov. 15, at the downtown Hagerstown gallery. The exhibit will be on view through Monday, Dec. 8.

There will be 22 pieces in the show, said Gallery Manager Lindsay Weaver.

"Line and Color" features work from Keely, who lives in Hagerstown and Frostburg, Md., and Jennifer L. Collins, from Radford, Va.


Keely said she and Collins are good friends.

Collins uses gestural and contour lines to explore the interaction between humanity and the natural world. A mixed-media artist, Keely will showcase "Tornado" pieces; she began the series in the late 1990s and has created nearly 40 paintings since.

Keely, known as a "color" painter, says she used quick-drying acrylic paint and, consequently, quick brush strokes to give the paintings a sense of movement.

Color and harried brush strokes, for example, helped set the mood for her painting "Sudden," for which large, blurred blocks of color suggest the scene of a tornado touchdown. Large swaths of deep, moody violets and indigos consume much of the composition and seems to funnel into the "earth," painted in the same dark shades of purple.

The funnel shape is set against a cheery, goldenrod yellow, and feels jarring and eerie, just as the sky might appear during a real tornado.

The irony: "I've never actually seen a tornado," Keely says.

If you go ...

WHAT: "Line and Color," featuring work by Kate Keely and Jennifer L. Collins

WHEN: Opening reception, 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 15. Exhibit runs Friday, Nov. 14, through Monday, Dec. 8.

WHERE: Washington County Arts Council gallery, 14 W. Washington St., Hagerstown

COST: Free

MORE: For more information, call the Washington County Arts Council at 301-791-3132.

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