Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Children of Darkness and Light

Drawings by Mabel Astarloa Haley
Mixed media by Heidi Marie Balmaceda

Paintings by Maite Tobon

Mabel Astarloa Haley began her series of drawings called "Grunge People" as an experiment, an emotional reaction to the frustrating situation in politics. She spotlights individuals in the crowd in a dramatic way which reflects her forty years of creating sets and costumes in Argentina, France, Switzerland and large American cities. She taught in the Departments of Theater Arts at Brandeis University in Boston and Portland State University. She has also exhibited her paintings in galleries and showcases in the Pacific Northwest, including Beaverton Arts Commission shows, The High Desert Museum in Bend, Klamath County Government Center, Oregon State University, and a one person show at the BICC Gallery, Oregon Health & Science University.

Heidi Marie Balmaceda is an artist from Portland, Oregon. As a little girl she spent time with her family in Chile and Colombia. Her Latin heritage lends itself to vibrant and rich colors in her artwork. She studied at Portland State University and has lived in the area for the last 30 years. Her current pieces are metallic acrylic paints layered with metal leaf pieces. It is a technique she developed over the last few years. Due to the nature of the materials used and their application, no two works are alike. Unique in their patterns of heated foils and designs, they change as the light around them changes, from softness and depth to brilliant flashes.

Maite Tobon brings an energetic, vibrant and simplified view of figures from her native country Colombia. She immigrated to the United States about fourteen years ago. As an artist, she has distilled her memories into figurative paintings which blend influences of the Colombian Pacific coast life and the African culture. She likes to show through her paintings a culture and life style where the people work hard yet seem to be happy much of the time. They show it through the rhythm and movement of their bodies and the vibrant colors of their clothing. They have no faces because they are anonymous people that represent a part of the world that is not easily comprehended and rarely listened to. Acrylic is her preferred medium and she uses a base of hard molding paste that gives the painting realism and movement, as well as visual and tactile effect.

September 30 - October 26, 2010
Opening and Artists' Reception - September 30, 6-9 PM
Gallery hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 11-6, Sunday 12-4

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