Tuesday, January 10, 2017

An Invitation I'm Happy to Accept

Where: Renwick Gallery

When: through January 16, 2017

Every other year, the Renwick showcases four artists that it believes deserve wider recognition.  Based on what I've seen over the years, I hope they get it.  I still have vivid memories of the knitted superhero costumes I saw several years ago.

This year's offerings are wonderful.  The pic is from the works of Steven Young Lee - I really wish I could buy one of those cups.  They are incredibly inviting somehow; I can imagine myself sitting down with one, full of tasty chai, enjoying a good book.  Lee's ceramics are just great - as I walked through the display of vase and pots, each with a hole in it, or deformed in some way, I was reminded of a show I'd seen at the Freer (which is supposed to re-open this year - hooray!) about the art of mending pottery.  And lo and behold, what should I see but a jar with exactly that sort of repair work.  Such a sense of self-satisfaction!

I also loved the jewelry of Jennifer Trask - stunning colors, particularly in "Sea Change Brooch."  Norwood Viviano traces human migration patterns to make his art, and Kristen Morgin uses clay for her "created nostalgia."  You think you're looking at a deck of cards or a lunchbox or "Peterson's Field Guide to the Birds," but it's all clay.

Verdict: The Renwick Invitational is always good; when you go, remember that preparations are well underway for the inauguration, so you may have to walk a bit out of your way.

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