Recent Paintings
February 14 - March 29

REDBUD, 2007

Oil and wax on canvas over wood panel

45 x 45 inches overall, (4 panels, 22 x 22 inches each)

An opening reception for the artist will be from 6:00 - 8:00 p.m., February 14, 2008. Please join us Saturday, February 16th, at noon for our "Saturday After" talk, as Anne Appleby gives an informal walking tour of her work.

Appleby's work is currently being shown at the Albright Knox Museum in Buffalo, NY in "The Panza Collection: An Experience of Color and Light" through February 24, 2008. Appleby is one of 16 artists, each generously given separate rooms of their work.

Anne Appleby's subtly modulated paintings reflect the physicality nature of horticultural cycles and the ineffability of seasonal changes. With the exception of works titled after seasons or experiences, most of these works are titled after the specific varieties of plants she has chosen to investigate; the grasses, trees, and flowers within the Pacific Coast and Rocky Mountain regions of the United States.

At first glance, Appleby's paintings appear to be a late-century variation on the rigorous fundamentals of minimalism. These works continue to build upon the minimalist idea of the grid, several staying within her well–known pattern of two to six multi–colored squares, ranging from 12 to 36 inches for each square. Two of the small, two–panel works refer to March and May, the colors seen in those months of Spring. In this exhibition, Appleby presents several three–panel works at just about human scale relating to time spent in various locations such as Ontario, and the East Coast. The intimacy of Appleby's smaller–scale works is replaced by the overwhelming effect of these saturated fields of rich color, which formally refer to open doors or windows.


Oil and wax on canvas over wood panel

60 x 106 inches overall, (3 panels, 60 x 34 inches each)

Where her work departs from minimalism is in its quirky nuances. Just as tribal rugs are knowingly woven with a mistake in their pattern to let out evil spirits, Appleby's homemade panels retain imperfections that hint at nature's unpredictable variety and complexity. The impression of a solid and immutable color gives way to the revelation that the paint, while no longer liquid, ebbs and flows in subtle nuances, melding the boundaries between two colors we know are distinct. What and how much she sees, and how she relates it in her reductivist translation, asks more of the viewer's own perceptions of the world than is relevant to most minimalist work.

Layer upon layer of oil paint, each subtly different in color, are successively brushed smooth until Appleby reaches the depth and luminosity she needs to complete her ethereal depiction of a specific plant, season or experience. Each seemingly monochromatic panel reveals a great degree of variation on closer inspection. The entire painting is the sum of a surprising range of color, each suggestive of a bit of information deemed crucial by the artist's patient affinity with her subjects. Her color choices, while not scientific, are indicative of her acute sense of observation. The artist compares her work to the "time-lapse films in which plants break through the ground. You can almost hear the earth making a noise."

Appleby was an award recipient of the 1999 Biennial Award from the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation. In 1996, the artist was an award recipient from the esteemed Society for the Encouragement of Contemporary Art, a SFMOMA auxiliary, supporting artists of exceptional promise working independently and at a high level of artistic maturity, but whose work has not yet received substantial recognition. She also received a WESTAF award in the same year. The artist's work is included in the collections of numerous private and public collections, including the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Berkeley Art Museum, CA. Anne Appleby is represented by Greg Kucera Gallery in Seattle and Gallery Paule Anglim in San Francisco.

Anne Appleby's recent paintings

Burpee Garden Revisited, 1973 - 1976
March 6 - March 29

Oil on canvas

70 x 85 inches

In 1973, following the spectacular success of his first exhibition of the Burpee Garden Series paintings at Seattle's Polly Friedlander Gallery, Alden Mason visited New York at the invitation of Chuck Close. Close, a former student of Mason, allowed him to install a number of his Burpee Garden Series paintings in Close's SoHo studio in the hopes of finding a dealer in NY. In particular, Close arranged for the maverick art dealer Allan Stone to view Mason's work.

On viewing the group of paintings Mason had installed in Close's studio, Stone agreed to buy all of the paintings and to represent Mason's work in New York. The two paintings illustrated here are among those works Stone acquired and held on to for the last nearly 35 years. We are pleased to present them for the first time in Seattle.

Allan Stone showed Mason's paintings through the late 1970s, finding an international market for the work. Some of the Burpee Garden paintings were also shown to great acclaim at Ruth Schaffner Gallery in Los Angeles. Paintings from the series are represented in the collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Denver Art Museum, Portland Art Museum, Seattle Art Museum, Tacoma Art Museum and the Museum of Northwest Art in La Conner, WA.

The Burpee Garden Series of oil paintings were the first of many triumphant innovations in paintings as his career progressed. They remain the pinnacle of early success of this remarkable artist of the Northwest. The series is named after the Burpee seed catalog which Mason remembered from his early years growing up on a farm in the Skagit Valley. He went on to attend the University of Washington, initially in entomology but graduating with a painting degree in 1947. Mason taught painting at the Art School of the University of Washington from 1949 – 1981.

Mason was later represented in New York by Charles Cowles Gallery, former curator at the Seattle Art Museum. Mason was represented by the Greg Kucera Gallery from 1983 to 1996. Foster/White Gallery has represented Mason since 2003 and currently has a show of recent work. We are pleased to work with Foster/White Gallery in presenting a broad range of Alden Mason's work in these two concurrent exhibitions.

Alden Mason's paintings

April 3 - May 10

Acrylic paint on canvas

24 x 30 inches

The new work by Jeffrey Simmons continues to deal with a smoothly sanded surface belying the remarkable painting underneath. The imagery suggests constellations, computer renderings, synthetic lighting effects and a myriad of references to scientific phenomena.

Jeffrey Simmons' paintings

Astral and Prismatic Fields
April 3 - May 10

48"x48", oil on canvas

Knutson's intensely colored paintings are are constructed of overlapping spirals and warped hexagonal lattices. The resulting tangle of contrasting hues pulse and undulate, radiating out from the center of the canvas. Just as the logic of a kaleidoscope's construction can result in a complex design of color and shape. Each shape, thickly painted with small brushstrokes, expands and contracts with unpredictably varied rhythms.

Michael Knutson's paintings