Wild and Wooly

It is rare that I find more than one artist to recommend from a single site. This month, however, I have discovered four talented artists whose works I think merit your attention, and three of them are handled by the same gallery - The Marsha Mateyka Gallery in Washington, D. C.

If I had to characterize all of their works, I would start with the words squirm, wriggle, and scrunch.

Jae Ko was born in Korea, got her undergraduate degree in Japan, and her MFA at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. In her sculptures, she uses tightly-coiled rolls of adding-machine paper which she contorts into unusual organic shapes. Some of her shapes were apparently suggested to her by the contorted forms of ancient pine trees in California. http://www.artline.com/galleries/mateyka/artists/ko/index.html

Nancy Wolf, born in Easton, Pennsylvania, received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design. She has been exhibiting for over thirty years and has works in numerous public collections. She is particularly adept at pencil drawings of rather Gothic architecture, reminding me of the architectural drawings of Piranesi. http://www.artline.com/galleries/mateyka/artists/wolf/wolf.html

Kathleen Kucka's paintings look as though she is spilling paint with deliberate speed. Although a grid pattern is inherent in some of them, she achieves a loose flowing surface with surprising hidden depths. http://www.artline.com/galleries/mateyka/artists/kucka/kucka.html

Michael Creighton, the only one of the four artists not represented by the Mateyka Gallery, takes squiggles and scribbles, as he calls them, to their extreme. In his sculptures, for example, he coats varying widths of cotton rope with a mix of acrylic paste and paper pulp, and then twists them into explosive shapes. He uses the words Notation and Marks to describe his paintings, some of which bear a strong resemblance to my own early digital imaging. http://www.creightonmichael.com/viewSeriesPage?pageKey=0

Finally, since all of us, artists and nonartists alike, rely on our brains to function in a predictable fashion, I urge you to read "The Abyss" by Oliver Sacks, published in the September 24, 2007 edition of the New Yorker magazine. Unlike Giraffe's Site of the Month and Quill articles this October, Clive Wearing never got any advance notice of the cataclysm about to befall his brain. His courage in dealing with it, however, is extraordinary, as is the support of his loving wife. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/09/24/070924fa_fact_sacks

c.Corinne Whitaker 2007