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Recently in Seattle

If human history were underwater, Alwyn O’Brien‘s ceramic vessels could serve as the bleached bones of the Ancien Regime, the decorative drained and dead on a dark sea floor.

4 Descending Notes
Manganese Clay and Glaze
9″ x 7″ x 5 1/2″

alwynobriengray.jpgHand-rolled coils make her lacy vessels. Born past their prime, they are in their own weird way pristine.

Story of Looking, 2010 Porcelain and glaze, Two Pieces 12 1/2″ x 14″ x 5″

alwynobrian2looking.jpgFollowing Thelonious Monk, she knows how to use the wrong note. See the brutal foot on the right, below.

Allegory of Something 2010
Manganese Clay and Glaze
10″ x 8 3/4″ x 5 3/8″

alwynobrienfoot.jpgAt James Harris through Jan. 15.

I realize O’Brien’s show is past its pull date and has been pulled. If we all lived 700 years, my timing would be impeccable. As it is I’m running a bit behind, still looking but allowing my notes from various art forays to remind untranscribed in their notebooks. Without notes, this is what I remember.

Abigail Reynolds at Ambach&Rice, through Jan. 16: Pop-up books have their own gravity, their flourishes unfurling and folding back down as each page turns. Reynolds’ intrusions onto the flat surface of printed imagery are always in full pop. She plays a game she invented and rigged in her favor. Any two images, dull as dirt, combine to shine.

The Universal Now: Natwest Tower 2010 Cut and folded vintage bookplates 16.5 x 23.25 inches

abigailreynoldspopup.jpgVictoria Haven at Greg Kucera, through Feb. 19. Inside any abstraction is a gaudy narrative that refuses to come out. In an abstraction is a blueprint that contains a house but leaves no clues to its construction. Although Victoria Haven’s supple geometries are light on their feet, they have an old-soul resonance. Strike them and they’d ring out, like gongs. Her most recent exhibit at Greg Kucera is a sleight-of-hand look at her sources, which are all about location, location, location. X marks the spot, Washington State.

NORTH X NORTHWEST MYSTIC (Gore-Tex® version), 2010
Gore-Tex®, silver marking film, thread
24 x 27.5 inches
victoriahaventri.jpgA Gore-Tex® mountain full of lakes and satellites combines natural beauty with high-tech surveillance, Seattle being the town that Boeing built. In her formative years, nuclear submarines cruised through Puget Sound. What was good for the military was good for Seattle. We even named our basketball team in the military’s honor.

Western red cedar
22 x 23 x 12 inches

victoriahavennofun.jpg“No Fun” comes from a late 1960s song by The Stooges. Carved into a sliced tree, the words rise like pepperoni on pizza pie: junk food forests folded into a four-four beat. I get a strong hit of Gretchen Bennett‘s influence in this show, which Haven uses for her own purposes.

Adam Ekberg at Platform Gallery through Feb. 12. Adam Ekberg is a medievalist, in the sense that he’s happy to dance on the head of a pin. Made of nothing much, his homey spectacles have an endearing flair.

Arrangement #1 2009, archival inkjet print
Available at 30 x 40 inches (edition of 3) and 40 x 50 inches (edition of 2)

adamekbergflashlite.jpgCarolina Silva at Lawrimore Project, through January. A couple of months ago, Lawrimore Project ceased to operate in the city’s largest gallery space and took up residence in its smallest, a white closet with a window facing Main Street in Pioneer Square, smaller than the smallest booth at a mainstream art fair. It can’t work, I thought, and yet, it’s working.

Carolina Silva is a maker, which means can think with her hands.

Tasks & Errands (individual details). 2010
Oven-bake clay
Dimensions variable

carolinasilvahands.jpgI love her drawings. They look as if she does them in her sleep.

The Bridge
, 2010

carolinasilvatable.jpgOnward to more regular posting….


  1. Great to read these. Welcome back! 🙂

  2. welcome back Regina; we all need a break from time to time 🙂

  3. I’m inspired! Thanks for turning me on to
    Abigail Reynolds, Carolina Silva, and Adam Ekberg.
    Great pictures!

  4. In my own (truly crazy) mind I envisioned you in a cabin somewhere in the world on a quiet and anonymous beach. You are pouring your heart out onto a keyboard and you are finally, like a boxer, sidestepping life’s assault. You are doing what you’ve always wanted to do. Your obligation to convention has been pushed aside and you’ve listened to that couragious voice that has finally managed to escape from the confines of your heart. You have learned your true priorities and you’ve exhaled your own prized chant of freedom and liberation. You’ve always known you’ve wanted to write and now is your time. It matters not at all if anyone is listening. This is your chance to fly. This is a gift. The best kind of gift. From self, to self.
    Perhaps I presume too much.
    Nevertheless, selfishly, I am happy to see that you’ve returned. No one else in this town does what you do quite as well as you are able to do it. Welcome back. –Marulis

  5. MissMarple says:

    So glad you are back. Missed your musings.

  6. Always pleased to see your perspective, always!

  7. carlo castellano says:

    Always impress by you ability to write about art,plus educating some minds.
    Un regreso con alegria.

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