by Amie Rangel
The last exhibition of the fall semester at the COS Art Gallery will feature paintings by California artists Mary Bardmess and Burton Rein. This engaging exhibition, Near and Far, will open Tuesday, November 8, and run through Friday, December 2, with the opening reception on Thursday, November 10 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Near and Far is an exhibition of oil paintings that explore both the subtly of the desolate landscape of the Central Valley region and the bold powerful forces of nature and beyond. Mary Bardmess lives in Los Banos and has been developing this body of work for over 25 years. She states, “I am drawn to empty places, harsh landscapes and their lonely silences, in the tradition of Thoreau, Edward Abby, Rick Bass, Annie Proulx and Gary Snyder.”
In her piece Cliff Shadow, 2003, the emphasis of the harsh shadows into each crack and fold in the mountainside where the water has eroded the earth away projects a sense of isolation and disparity. “I seek abstractions within familiar shapes, looking for the places where the earth has risen, and then fallen, or melted in rain and wind, or burned away in fires, where the earth surface has been scraped away and reveals a geologic history… I am seeking a clear and deliberate expression, beautiful and precise, clean and solid. I’m finding the subtle tones and shades of color within clearly differentiated planes of light and shadow,” states Bardmess.
In contrast to the recognizable landscape, the bold colorful work of Los Angeles artist, Burton Rein will also be featured. Rein’s inspiration derives from the natural powerful forces, such as: volcanic eruptions, tornadoes, and hurricanes. He states, “My imagery springs from the intersection of art and science: Observations of hurricanes, spiral galaxies, solar flares, and supernovas engage my sense of wonder. The mysteries of powerful invisible forces such as gravitation and magnetism compel my interest. And nature’s recurring patterns hold endless fascination for me.”
Bardmess received a Bachelor of Arts from CSULA in 1973 where she studied printmaking, ceramics, sculpture and painting. She continues to exhibit throughout California, including the 56th National Juried Exhibition at the Haggin Art Museum, Los Banos Arts Council Group Exhibition, and a solo exhibition at the Merced Arts Council.
Burton Rein attended Otis College of Art and Design where he obtained his BFA in 1985. He is an active member of the Los Angeles Art Association, the Orange County Center for Contemporary Art, and HACK (Hollywood Artists Critical Kollective). Most recently he was a featured artist in the September issue of Direct Art Magazine. Rein is represented by Art Source LA, and Contemporary Artists’ Services in Ventura County, where he recently had a solo show at the Karpeles Museum in Santa Barbara.
The show opens Tuesday, November 8, and runs through Friday, December 2. The opening reception will be held on Thursday, November 10 from 5-7 p.m. The COS Art Gallery is located on the ground floor, room 214 of the Kaweah Building. Free parking is available on the night of the reception in lots 3 and 7. If coming to the gallery during the day, 20-minute parking is available in lot 3 at the corner of Meadow Lane and Mooney Blvd. or in the half-circle off Mooney Blvd. Our newly extended hours are: Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. For further information call the COS Art Gallery at 737-4861.