Lithographer J. Michael Pierce is exhibiting some new twists of paper at the Lorenz Gallery in Bethesda this month. Since last spring Pierce has been making paper and in the process, is molding art. The selection of work exhibited allows viewers to follow the development of his paper reliefs.
Two early, traditionally flat lithographs demonstrate Pierce's original interest in color in variety of linear textures and in the forms created by crushed car doors and bumpers. Pierce folded and molded color lithographs into reliefs when they were wet. The creases and ridges emerged from the color textures of the printed images, giving tangible substance to forms reminiscent of crumpled cars. The result is an immutable and rather conclusive form which enhances the power of the images, but also lends an air of closed finality.
Now, instead of a two-step procedure, Pierce is unifying the process with the image by making textured paper whose form in the making, shaping and coloring becomes the image itself."Composition With Metallic Blue" is an especially successful hand-made molded relief.
Unfortunately this is the last exhibition of the successful six-month Washington Artist of the Month series, coordinated by Susan Ohle to provide gallery support for local artists.