Nathan Caldwell A&E Editor Art Gallery Opening
Study of human form and dancers graces art gallery In the constant hustle and bustle of life it’s easy to lose sight of the simple beauties in life. On Aug. 28, the Robert T. Wright Community Gallery of Art hosted a a show that emphasized a splendor often overlooked, the human body. The gallery features the works of two artists, Judith Roth and Pamela Lee. The works of Pamela Lee include a series of terra-cotta sculptures that are focused exclusively on the female form. In contrast, the art of Judith Roth is a series of paintings that feature a broad cross-section of humanity, often with dancers featured. Lee’s sculptures are beautiful in their simplicity. The terra-cotta medium wonderfully models the human figure in both tone and texture, elegantly capturing fine feminine curves gloriously contrasted with hard lines. According to Lee, her inspiration came from nature. “What inspires me are the shapes that I see in the landscape and in people,” Lee said. “Natural forms that you would see when you go for a walk are forms that are repeated in the human body.” She added that her creative process is similar to an athlete’s. “You know in sports they say you go into a zone? Well I go there when I’m making art, and being there is just a terrific place to be.” Lee explained her preference for terra-cotta as a medium in this series as being a multifaceted conclusion. “I like terra-cotta because I like the way it looks as a finished
product,” she said. “I don’t glaze my pieces, I use specific types of clay and I like that real natural look. I like the idea that it is earth.” CLC student Estphany Guzman said she enjoyed Lee’s sculptures. “I like that it’s just women that she’s sculpting,” Guzman said. “My favorite so far is ‘The Dancer,’ I like the negative space,” she added. Lee said “The Dancer” is one of her favorite pieces. “I like it because the flow and shapes go so well together,” she said. “It works really well no matter what side it is viewed from.” The other artist whose work is on display is Judith Roth. Her paintings cover a range of mediums, from oil to pastel to graphite. Whatever the medium, her work captures individuals in a flurry of brilliant color and plenty of stylistic flair. A major facet of Roth’s paintings is the prevalence of dancers. Roth’s studio is located near a dance studio and her love for dance has run in her family for generations. Roth said her work starts from the inside and works to the outside. “When I work on these pieces it comes from the gut and heart, and you put it forth,” she said. “You experience the person as you paint and hope that it translates to the viewer so that they can grasp the humanity of these various people.” Estphany Guzman said she also enjoyed Roth’s work. “The paintings are really good, I like the use of color and she doesn’t blend.” Both Lee and Roth said they have future works planned.
“I plan some continued work on the figures and I might start incorporating some new shapes that are more landscape like, as well as bringing landscape shapes into animal shapes,” Lee said. She added that she may move into some material that is commonly cast for the animal figures. Roth said she is working on a collaboration with a fellow artist that will be on display in October for Chicago artist’s month in the ARC Gallery, a non-profit women’s cooperative gallery in Chicago. The piece is to be a combination of the urban scene with a mosaic of figures. Both Roth and Lee said CLC hosts great exhibits for the arts. “I really like the gallery,” Lee said. “I’ve always felt that they put on tremendous exhibitions. They display it well and I like the idea that people can come in and use the library and see the art.” Roth said she also has enjoyed working with CLC in the past. “It’s beautiful; I think Steve Jones [the curator] does a wonderful job here. The College of Lake County has been very good to me, and I’m glad to be back.” The art is on display at the Robert T. Wright Community Gallery of Art on the Grayslake Campus in the library. Current gallery hours are Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Sunday, 1 to 5 p.m. The gallery will be closed Sept. 7 to 8 for the Labor Day holiday. For more information contact the curator Steve Jones by e-mail at email@example.com, by phone at (847) 543-2240, or visit the gallery page at http://gallery.clcillinois.edu/.