Locks Gallery is pleased to present coinciding exhibitions of the artist Neysa Grassi and the late artist Warren Rohrer (1927-1995). With this unique opportunity to view their work simultaneously, these exhibitions offer fresh perspectives into painterly process and perception in abstraction. Both artists continue to have strong influences in the Philadelphia art community, each prominent educators in their own right. The exhibitions will be on view through April 30, 2014 with an opening reception on Friday, April 4, from 5:30-7:30pm.
Message Bearer marks the twentieth exhibition at the gallery of the work of Warren Rohrer, a relationship that began in 1974. This exhibition focuses on his works from the 1980s, where his paintings became more focused on perception of color and both bold and subtle color-shifts. Rohrer’s painterly language of mark-making had evolved into a fully mature voice of layered and vibrant paintings, tending to reveal their workinghistory around the edges of the pieces. After a Mennonite upbringing in Lancaster County, PA, his work was always in direct dialogue with the landscape around him. In 1984, the artist moved into the former studio of artist Violet Oakley in Chestnut Hill, but Rohrer continued to make weekly day-trips to the fields of Lancaster County and sites near where his ancestors first settled, making hundreds of photographs and sketches.
Endless Source features new intimate works in oil on board by Neysa Grassi alongside other works highlighting her relationship to water. Naming each new painting after seemingly anonymous lakes and ponds, Grassi culled the titles from actual bodies of water. These names poetically mimic her abstractions which point to specific sensations and simultaneously refrain from a clear reading. Grassi’s work often evokes elemental qualities, but the importance of water, and its erosive sculpting and weathering force, is crucial to understanding her own studio practice. Marked by their ethereal and atmospheric quality, each of Grassi’s paintings include numerous layers of paint. That additive process is balanced with the subtractive actions of scarring, wiping out, scraping, and sanding down that which she has applied to the canvas or panel.
Neysa Grassi lives and works in Philadelphia, where she is a faculty critic at PAFA and was a recipient of a Pew Fellowship in the Arts. She has had solo exhibitions at several museums, including the Pensacola Art Museum, FL and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, PA. Since 1990 the artist has had over 18 one-person exhibitions in galleries in Philadelphia and New York. Her work is in the collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and the Woodmere Art Museum. Recently she was included in Modern Women at PAFA: From Cassatt to OKeeffe and The Female Gaze: Women Artists Making Their World at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
Warren Rohrer (1927-1995) taught for 25 years at the Philadelphia College of Art. His paintings are represented in many museums collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Philadelphia Museum of Art, The National Gallery of Art, The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Denver Art Museum, Smith College Museum of Art and the Delaware Art Museum. Rohrer was the subject of a retrospective at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2003.
Locks Gallery is located at 600 Washington Square South in Philadelphia, PA. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 am to 6 pm. For additional information, please contact Locks Gallery at 215.629.1000, 215.629.3868 fax, or firstname.lastname@example.org