3 to the Third
Brian Elliot, Kevin Evans and Liz Orleans
April 18 - June 3, 2006
Opening Reception: Saturday April 22, 7-11pm
This third anniversary show at Varnish features cast metal sculptor Brian Elliot's Bay Area debut, intaglio print-maker Kevin Evans and ceramic sculptor/installation artist Liz Orleans.
Each of Brian Elliot's cast metal pieces---about 27" high, 11" deep and 18" wide---have an improbable charisma and beauty to them, which is only enhanced by the lightness of their appearance. These brave ladies, like a fleet of demure, feminine Zeppelins, look as if they might float away unless tethered. Brian Elliot is influenced by Gaudi's passion and overstatement, Harrell Fletcher's elevation of the seemingly ordinary and banal into ingenious and respectful looks at the human condition, the aesthetics of Popular Mechanics magazine prior to 1950, Terry Gilliam's fascination with puppet-like creations, as well as the glorious high fashion of Issey Miyake.
Sculptor Elizabeth Orleans works in clay and tells "ceramic tales." She is inclined to pair visual and tactile structures like smooth, orbed surfaces along with crusty exteriors in order to excite what she calls, "visual sensations." "I want," says Orleans, "to illustrate the visual stimulation you get from seeing paint peeling, metal rusting or moss growing." These ceramic tales reflect the currents or ravages of time and/or evolution. At first glance some of them look like they could have come from the ocean, but upon closer inspection, reveal the telltale clues of an unfolding story.
In his painting and other work Kevin Evans looks to the concealed natural world for inspiration. He moves forward through projects with a combination of instinct and imagination. "It is," says Evans, "an unpredictable voyage toward an unpredictable outcome." The images, especially in his intaglio work, often seem dense and riddled with a structural mystery that resists explanation. It's easy to imagine they might be only recently discovered but still unexplained plans of a Michelangelo.