Paintings shine at WSG show
If you're going to be around Ann Arbor's Main Street this weekend, duck into the WSG Gallery to catch "Spring Collection," a 16-artist group show with some very enjoyable elements.
But you'll have to act fast. "Spring Collection" comes down after Saturday.
Like the Detroit Artists Market, WSG is a membership-based gallery run as a sort of artists' collective, and shows work in a variety of media. And like DAM, it has a history of mounting interesting shows.
"Spring Collection," a 16-person group exhibit, falls neatly into that category, with work ranging from small bronze sculpture to three walls hung with a grid work of identically sized square panels painted in a variety of styles by a variety of artists. (One even has a little 3-D boat emerging from the surface.)
Several of the standouts in this show are paintings. Take Peter Gooch's striped composition, "Oreti Beach, N.Z," drawn from his Southern Ocean Series, and apparently referencing New Zealand.
But don't expect a watery beachscape. "Oreti Beach" features a vertical stack of colored, horizontal bars that resemble a ladder — or a vertical shutter with slats.
Set against a strong mustard background, this punchy abstract seems to conjure up the visual disorientation that's sometimes a part of walking into blinding sunlight.
The colors seem to reflect the colorful chaos we see when we close our eyes against the glare — wildly incompatible colors vie for attention, from dark yellow to dull pink and black.
Oddly it's all quite arresting.
Equally colorful but more recognizable is Valerie Mann's "Waterworks & Parker Rds, Wheat Field," a sun-drenched view of golden wheat under a robin's-egg sky. There's a loose, handsomely slapdash quality to the work, particularly in the wheat field, composed of daubs of brilliant yellow and red that Van Gogh would have liked.
You don't recall seeing red in your experience of wheat fields? Never mind — this is a hugely satisfying composition, and one in which the artist demonstrates a remarkable facility for clouds.
Through May 2
WSG Gallery, 306 S. Main, Ann Arbor
Noon - 6 p.m. Tuesday & Wednesday; noon - 9 p.m. Thursday; noon - 10 p.m. Friday & Saturday; noon - 5 p.m. Sunday