Thursday, December 11, 2008

Introducing Alison Keogh

If you haven't had a chance to drop in and see our current exhibit, Landscape - a different view: Collection of works by Alison Keogh, we highly recommend you take a few moments for a visit. The Seattle artist’s remarkable newsprint reliefs, graphite botanicals, bronze geologic landscapes, driftwood & newsprint artifacts, and Sumi-scapes have all been very well received; we have never seen anything quite like Alison's work. Here are a few photos, including close-ups of the work:

Alison Keogh; sumiscape installation in background.

Artist Statement

This collection of work represents my personal landscapes – capturing a dialogue with the natural world

Each piece and series expresses itself through repetition and texture. The act of repetition brings about a state of intensified awareness during the creative process and is reinforced in the final work.

I work with elemental materials that require a direct tactile manipulation using minimal tools. Graphite, paper, newsprint and sumi ink are all derived from trees. The materials may change, but the process of repetition and the exploration to reveal the invisible remains constant.

Increasingly my breath has become an important part of the process and I now consciously match my movements with my breath.

The exhibition “Landscape – a different view” provides the viewer with an alternative perspective to experience the materials with a changed perception.

Exhibition Notes:

Newsprint Reliefs

Newsprint relief: The Financial Times, given a new look!

These reliefs depict patterns of my breath as I manipulate layers of the British Financial Times newspaper into topographical landscapes.

Selected sheets of the stock market pages are first treated with a deacidification product for longevity and then carefully torn into strips. Next, the edges are treated with ink. The work is built-up layer upon layer. Finally a protective coating of archival varnish is applied.
The wave like texture is achieved by forming a loop in the strip of paper and securing it with a bookbinding adhesive. I pay attention to my breathing as I do this; each loop is an inhalation or an exhalation. The work creates its own field of consciousness. The impermanence of the paper is analogous to the impermanence of our thoughts. The stock market pages are used for their visual consistency.

This series concerns the discovery of nature within the newspaper. It transcends the ordinary daily purpose as a conveyor of “news”… and now expresses itself through an altered state of being.

Graphite Botanicals

Chestnut Leaves, graphite on Japanese kozo paper
These are a series of intricate studies of plant matter using the mediums of graphite and Japanese kozo paper. I have captured the structure of plants with a precise but subtle sensuality.

This work was originally exhibited in Sweden under the title “Graphite Impressions”. It evolved from my interest in printing and more particularly “frottage”.

The leaves are pressed, dried and selected for individual vein structure. Then they are carefully attached to a small square card to preserve their fragility during the frottage process. The leaf square is placed under the Japanese paper and the graphite is rubbed over the top. Each impression is created individually.

The work is presented in a contemporary and abstract manner to create a new perspective. Some of the plant materials used include maize, red oak, cabbage and chestnut leaves.


My current work with sumi ink is a continuation of the Newsprint Reliefs: the preoccupation with line as texture and the conscious involvement of my breath as I work.

In most cases an inhalation is represented as a light fine line, an exhalation being heavier and thicker.

Two types of brushes are used which create distinctly different results. The heavy weight paper was selected for the smooth finish which affects the manner in which the ink is absorbed.

There is an underlying motive of self discovery through the act of cultivating calmness and concentration during the work.

While experiencing the karesansui (dry gardens) in Japan this year and in particular the garden at Ryoan-ji Temple, I discovered a connection with my Sumi-scape line drawings. The exact nature of this connection continues to unfold as I develop this exciting new medium.

-Alison Keogh

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Celebrating Our 6th Anniversary

Last Friday, December 5th, 2008, The Island Gallery began the celebration of its 6th Anniversary by opening two distinct exhibitions. The Artists’ Reception ran from 6-8 pm; both shows will continue in place until January 23th, 2009.

Our 4th Annual Wearable Art Show features the following artists:

Textile Artists:

Barbara de Jounge, Laguna Beach, California; Isnia, Yogyakarta, Java Island, Indonesia; Akihiko Izukura, Kyoto, Japan; Elizabeth Merrill, Port Townsend, Washington; Lynn Mizono, Whidbey Island, Washington; David Mendoza, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia; Nubia, Bainbridge Island, Washington; Britt Rynearson, Seattle, Washington; Carter Smith, Nahant, Massachusetts; Arlene Wohl, Sausalito, California.

Above: Barbara de Jounge; Britt Rynearson; Britt Rynearson; Carter Smith; Akihiko Izukura

Jewelry Artists: Sophie Bryant, Bainbridge Island, Washington; Shelley Herman, Studio City, California; Lucia, Bainbridge Island, Washington; David Mendoza, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia; Su Olsen, Bainbridge Island, Washington;Virginia Paquette, Seattle, Washington;Cleva Rose, Poulsbo, Washington; Roger Wilbur, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Lou Zeldis, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia.

Above: Virginia Paquette; Cleva Rose; Rober Wilbur;
Su Olsen; Lucia

Also featuring Kimono Series Paintings by Bainbridge Island Artist Tracy Dunn:

Above: Ruth Akie Dancing; Michie; The Way Forward; Sisters (diptych)

In the North Gallery, introducing
Landscape - a different view
Collection of works by Alison Keogh

Above: "Chestnut Leaves" Graphite Botanical; Newsprint Relief #7

The Seattle artist’s personal landscapes, capturing a dialogue with the natural world in newsprint reliefs, graphite botanicals, bronze geologic landscapes, driftwood & newsprint artifacts, and

Crowds admiring Alison's Sumi-scape installation.

I'll write more about Alison in an upcoming posting, including more images and her Exhibition Notes.

Glass Ornaments are Here

Ted Jolda recently sent us a great big batch of his delightful glass ornaments. Starting at $20, these are perfect for gifts, on the Christmas tree, or to brighten a kitchen window. Also available are pretty hand-forged copper hooks that fit the ornaments perfectly (regular wire ornament hooks aren't quite sturdy enough - nor as attractive). They're $1.50 each.

Pinecone, Golden Pears, Orange, Apples

Eggplant, Coffe Beans, Figs

We also carry Ted's pomegranates, strawberries, red and green mini-pears, red, green and gold apples, blueberries, blackberries, peppers, garlic, ladybugs, golf balls, and snowmen!
(Check out one of our past posts for Ted's Oprah connection - a wonderful story.)

More Beasts!

Here are a few of Eva Funderburgh's new critters:

Goat Tailed Beast

Two Birds



Fall Shows: South Sound Fire, 3 X 3

In September and October, the gallery welcomed another group of talented artists: the crew of woodfire potters who regularly fire at the Benn/Gallagher Harstine Island kilns, and three local woodworkers whose furniture and sculptures from local and exotic woods are still creating buzz.
Artists, pottery on South Sound Fire's opening night

Bob and Birgit Spangler show off a lighted buffet

South Sound Fire Artists: John Benn and Colleen Gallagher (kiln owners), Harstine Island; John Harris, Auburn; Chris Knapp, Seattle; Andy Lewis-Lechner, Tacoma; Susan Lochner, Auburn; Reid Ozaki, Tacoma.

3 X 3 Artists: Cecil Ross, Bainbridge Island; Robert Spangler, Bainbridge Island; Howard Todd, Kingston.