Although it has more square footage than most D.C. galleries, Long View Gallery gives art room to breathe. There are only a few pieces in “ReFresh,” a group show of new work by gallery regulars, and they look great in the wide-open space. These include large works, such as Cheryl Wassenaar’s assemblages of found commercial signage — think Kurt Schwitters with a band saw rather than scissors — but also Marie Ringwald’s small, simple renderings of sheds, as paintings and models.
The gallery’s aesthetic tends toward the meticulous and sleek, so it’s fitting that two of the featured artists coat their art with resin. Mike Weber’s “Grandfather Time” — which looks like a magazine illustration, but not in a bad way — has a glossy finish. Tony Savoie’s glazes are lumpier, but his style is no less accomplished. He paints on the back of acrylic panels, leaving some areas clear to show objects he places beneath the surface. The centerpiece of his offerings — and of the entire show — is “Flounder,” in which a transparent area in the shape of that fish reveals the stuff below, a pileup of brownish junk that suggests the bottom of a defiled ocean. Savoie is also showing some more traditional paintings, which are beautifully made. But it’s his 3-D work that fascinates, offering literal depths beneath the shiny skin.
‘Greetings From Paradise’
Trained in sculpture, Annie Albagli has recently been an artist in residence at Pyramid Atlantic, a Silver Spring printmaking center. One result of this affiliation is “Greetings From Paradise,” her show at Pleasant Plains Workshop. It ranges from a 3-D installation in the storefront gallery’s display window to postcard-size prints. All contrast two ideas of heavenly perfection: trees from an Edenic garden (actually, the artist’s Germantown back yard) and the pure form of geometric shapes (specifically, a pyramid). This opposition may not be philosophically profound. But it works visually, especially when Albagli contrasts branches in muted blues and grays with pyramids in day-glo orange and yellow. The subtle variations in form and hue play off each other as the lone hot color in the horizontal prints on one wall leads to the brighter, vertically oriented ones on the other. It’s a satisfying journey for the eye, even if it doesn’t lead all the way to paradise.
Jenkins is a freelance writer.
1460 Wall Mountables
on view through Sunday at District of Columbia Arts Center, 2438 18th St. NW, 202-462-7833, www.dcartscenter.org.
on view through Saturday at Touchstone Gallery, 901 New York Ave. NW, 202-347-2787, www.touchstonegallery.com.
on view through Sunday at Long View Gallery, 1234 Ninth St. NW, 202-232-4788,
Annie Albagli: Greetings
on view through Saturday at Pleasant Plains Workshop, 2608 Georgia Ave. NW, www.