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PARALLEL LINES - Works on Paper from Monterey County Collections

January 28th, 2008

Showing in the Hartnell gallery from February 4th - March 13th, 2008.

Parallel Lines is the most recent in an annual series of history-based exhibitions at Hartnell College Gallery. It examines many of the functions of art on paper in western culture from the late Middle Ages to the present. Some of the works are small and concise, others bold and flowing, but all entail the use of a linear visual vocabulary. The exhibition is drawn from private collections in Monterey County. The Hartnell Gallery, located on the main campus on West Alisal St in Salinas, is open MTWTh 10am -1pm and MTW evenings from 6-9pm. Admission is free but on-campus parking is one dollar.

Rotating Photos

The earliest work in the exhibition, a 15th Century late medieval manuscript page, focuses on devout religious content with minute and elegant script. An 18th Century ink-wash figure study served as a model for a larger oil or fresco painting. Detailed prints helped to disseminate newly discovered scientific information or illustrate architectural plans. Many of these works, created prior to the invention of photography, were more valued for the information they contained than as actual works of art. By the mid-19th Century however, more and more collectors and dealers saw works on paper as inherently important artistic objects. The larger part of this exhibition examines examples from the mid 19th century onward, created with independent esthetic qualities and intentions.

Traditional drawing materials of graphite, ink, charcoal, are well represented, as are various methods of making multiple images by etching, and lithography. The exhibition includes examples by renowned European masters such as Delacroix and Manet who led the way for later artists to exploit the use of more expressive line and more dramatic compositions. Newer artists in the late 20th and early 21st centuries continue to explore these ideas, but in non-traditional media such as the oil transfer work of Doug Glovaski and the photomechanical images of Hiroyuki Kitano.

As with previous exhibitions in this series, the show concludes with examples by Monterey County artists whose working methods derive from this venerable tradition. Susan Manchester is represented by three related pieces showing her meticulous and careful development of an idea from preliminary studies to the completed large-scale finished work.

David Ligare explores the very nature of drawing as concept as well as illusion. His Sand Drawings #19 and # 23, from 1977, are precise renderings of simple enigmatic lines drawn in wet sand near of the edge of the sea. One knows how soon these spontaneous acts will be washed away by the next incoming wave, but they are made permanent and timeless by his highly refined draftsmanship. The original firm purposeful lines are recorded for the viewer with a clarity that equals a photograph.

Support for the Hartnell Gallery comes from the Hartnell College Foundation through the Burrel Leonard Bequest, Ms. Joan Lam and the patrons of the Studio Party and Art Auction.

For Further information please contact Gary Smith, Gallery Director, 831 755 6791