Jen Tough Gallery

B. Robert: New Beginnings

Jen Tough Hemsley
   Hopeful  , oil on canvas, 60x52, 2018, $5900

Hopeful, oil on canvas, 60x52, 2018, $5900

B. Robert: New Beginnings

JUNE 08 - 21  

Opening Reception: 

SATURDAY, JUNE 09, 5:00-7:00

Bethany Robert is a Los Angeles based artist known for her large scale abstract expressionist pieces. Her work employs bright colors on airy white backgrounds that reference a playful street aesthetic and style. A favorite of interior designers, Robert's work is featured in numerous upscale spaces worldwide as well as numerous primetime television shows. Her background in fashion, travel and the music industry have all heavily influenced her distinctive style. Her pieces feature refined designs built with expressive strokes of bold color pulled together with a natural sense of composition. This is Bethany's first solo exhibition at the gallery.

Preview of show and available work can be seen on the gallery website

Julie Brookman: Saudade

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Julie Brookman: Saudade

May 25 - June 07  |  Opening Reception: Saturday, May 26, 5:00-7:00

Jen Tough Gallery is pleased to present Bay Area artist Julie Brookman's first solo show at the gallery titled, "Saudade". Julie's aquatic works are achieved by using layer upon semi-transparent layer of encaustic wax, creating a glassine like surface that mirrors the ocean's surface. Brookman focuses on repetition of movement to allow the paintings to form intuitively, and of their own volition. Her extremely popular work is collected and adored for this unique surface quality, her endless fascination with pounding surf, tranquil waters and rolling waves. Don't miss this incredible show featuring Julie's most recent explorations in wax.

"Julie Brookman has given her recent paintings the title, Saudade. Though this Portuguese word is notoriously difficult to translate, the English word, nostalgia, may come closest. The two ideas that seem to crop up in all definitions of Saudade are 1. a yearning for something in the past, and 2. a keen awareness of ephemerality. I take the time to parse this word because so much of the energy that is in Brookman’s paintings seems to flow from these ideas. She has found a way to freeze the pounding surf, to make time, and sea foam, stand still, and in the process of looking at the results we are somehow made aware of the impossibility of the task at hand, for the more we stare at the hypnotically complex and unendingly irregular patterns of waves, the more aware we are that to watch something in the act of becoming, or of dissolving, is only to remember what it looked like a moment ago, which is to say that seeing is an agency of memory.

The most recent of these paintings turn away from the surf, and it’s collision with the land, and abandon any obvious direct referents in favor of mystery; these latter paintings could conceivably be construed as the surface of metallic planets, or as vast oil slicks, but on the wall they present themselves with an authority that requires no further gloss.

The creation of the paintings involves more elemental processes than the usual picture requires. Brookman works in encaustic, a medium of ancient provenance which involves hot wax as a binder for pigment. The paint must be heated at various stages of application in order to make it able to be brushed and manipulated. In addition to heating pans of color on a hot plate, Brookman employs a variety of torches to heat and re-heat the surface of the painting. Aspects of the process are inherently uncontrollable, and instead require an ability to allow the painting to unfold on its own. Drastic changes can occur over large areas quite quickly, so the artist must be alert to nuances of timing as she wields her industrial torch in great sweeps across the surface." —Michael Pauker

Rebecca Crowell: Inner Nature ~ Opening Reception Saturday, May 12

Jen Tough Hemsley
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OPENING RECEPTION THIS SATURDAY, MAY 12, 5:00-7:00
ARTIST AND AUTHOR REBECCA CROWELL WILL BE PRESENT. JOIN US!

Jen Tough Gallery is pleased to announce the solo exhibition of Wisconsin and New Mexico based artist Rebecca Crowell. World renown for her ethereal, moody abstractions, her book on cold wax medium, and exceptional teaching ability, this is Rebecca Crowell's first solo exhibition at the gallery, having been in two other group shows, "Wax" and "Women in the Abstract", both in 2017.

Known for her richly ethereal paintings that recall the natural world through an earthen surface and palette, Crowell's work begs for closer, more intimate examination. Depicting both distant landscapes and a studious recollection of natural surfaces, the work creates a sense of calm and transcendence. In this body of work, many of the paintings reflect her emotional response to travel and sense of place.

She currently lives in and works in Wisconsin and New Mexico, is represented by numerous galleries in Europe and the United States, and is the author of the book Cold Wax Medium: Techniques, Concepts and Conversations with Jerry McLaughlin. Crowell is widely sought after for her teaching expertise, and her work is in both private and corporate collections worldwide.

"Certain kinds of landscapes feel like home to my soul. These are places that are rugged, wild, and vast, yet they move me to an inner quiet and sense of peace. In them I feel a deep connection both to the place and to my truest self. When I’m in these places I spend time alone walking, exploring, photographing, and looking. I experience moments that evoke the essence of the place where I am, and these lead to strong sensory and emotional memories. In the studio, these memories influence my choices of color, texture, line and shape. My images are also the result of response to materials and process, free association and following intuitive impulses.

Wild locations that have had an impact on my work include western Ireland, where I am a Fellow at Ballinglen Arts Foundation, and northern New Mexico where my husband and I have a winter home. I’ve also spent significant time in northern Sweden, the Catalonia region of Spain, northern Italy and the North Island of New Zealand. Painting satisfies a basic need for me-- a channel to my inner self, a reflection of these meaningful experiences, and a path to new discoveries. I’ve been painting professionally for over 30 years, and remain challenged and energized by my process. I work with a balance of spontaneity and careful editing, moving back and forth from intuitive flow to thoughtful analysis. My aim is to achieve structural integrity and strength through the accumulation of quiet passages and nuanced surfaces. I build up multiple layers of paint mixed with cold wax medium. Sometimes the layers are thick and textural, other times they are thin veils of color. The layers are selectively scratched, eroded and dissolved, an approach that reflects natural processes of the rugged places I love". — Rebecca Crowell

Since earning her MFA in painting from Arizona State University in 1985, Rebecca Crowell has led a life focused on painting. When she is not traveling for teaching or for artist residencies (in such places as the Catalonia region of Spain, northern Sweden, and coastal areas of Ireland) she works almost daily in her studio in rural western Wisconsin. She draws significant influence from these residencies and travels, as well as from her surroundings at home.

Rebecca Crowell is known for her innovative painting techniques involving cold wax medium and mixed media, and is represented by a number of fine art galleries in various locations including Dublin, Ireland; Chicago, Illinois; Telluride, Colorado; Atlanta, Georgia; Vallejo, California; Door County, Wisconsin; Tucson, Arizona; and Columbia, Missouri. Her representation with Gormleys Fine Art in Dublin has recently led to international exposure, including several European art fairs.

"Crowell's works are abstracted from nature: they are personal responses to the visual forms, colors and atmospheres that have surrounded her in a variety of locations. There are vestiges of representation in Rebecca Crowell's work, but it is a type of representation that has been refined and re-constituted through her artistic sensibility and through her emotions." —John Seed, 2014

   My Ireland ,  48"x24" oil on panel

My Ireland, 48"x24" oil on panel

This Weekend: Benicia Open Studios + Carol Dalton Reception

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Benicia Artists Open Studios will take place on Saturday & Sunday, May 5 & 6

Saturday, 11 am to 7 p.m.
Sunday, 11 am to 5 pm.

Benicia Open Studios is Arts Benicia’s most highly attended annual event with more than 4,000 visitors! Well known for its vibrant artist community, each year scores of artists open the doors of their studio spaces throughout Benicia’s Historic Arsenal District and all over town, providing a unique glimpse into their creative world.

Visitors can ride a SolTrans Shuttle free of charge between the arsenal and downtown and explore artist studios on Jackson and Tyler Streets in the arsenal, see glass blowing, tour galleries and other venues on First Street, speak with artists about their work, watch demonstrations, and purchase original art.

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Carol Dalton: Written In The Sand

APRIL 27 - MAY 10, 2018 |  OPENING RECEPTION SATURDAY, MAY 05, 5:00-7:00

Carol is primarily a painter, also working with mixed media, collage, and printmaking.  She starts with collaged and pigmented paintings on board, and scores, scrapes, and abrades, and marks, creating rough textured surfaces.  Washes of pigment are added, distilling the surfaces and infusing them with a powerful and balanced presence.

Recent works are concerned with environmental and communication issues.   Dalton’s sensitivity to her materials and her regard for her subjects, brings depth and authenticity to the pieces.  She inspires non artists and artists alike with a layered beauty and intensity to her work.

Carol studied at the Santa Barbara Art Institute from 1971-1974. She has shown in the Bay Area for many years since moving there after art school, and has work in museum, corporate, and private collections. She maintains an active studio practice in Benicia, California.

Rebecca Crowell: Inner Nature

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Join us for an incredible solo exhibition of internationally recognized painter Rebecca Crowell May 11-24 with an opening reception on Saturday, May 12, 5:00-7:00.

Known for her richly ethereal paintings that recall the natural world through an earthen surface and palette, Crowell's work begs for closer, more intimate examination. Depicting both distant landscapes and a studious recollection of natural surfaces, the work creates a sense of calm and transcendence. In this body of work, many of the paintings reflect her emotional response to travel and sense of place.

Having been in several group shows and art fairs with Jen Tough Gallery, this is her first solo exhibition with the gallery. She currently lives in and works in Wisconsin and New Mexico, is represented by numerous galleries in Europe and the United States, and is the author of the book Cold Wax Medium: Techniques, Concepts and Conversations with Jerry McLaughlin. Crowell is widely sought after for her teaching expertise, and her work is in both private and corporate collections worldwide.


"Certain kinds of landscapes feel like home to my soul. These are places that are rugged, wild, and vast, yet they move me to an inner quiet and sense of peace. In them I feel a deep connection both to the place and to my truest self. When I’m in these places I spend time alone walking, exploring, photographing, and looking. I experience moments that evoke the essence of the place where I am, and these lead to strong sensory and emotional memories. In the studio, these memories influence my choices of color, texture, line and shape. My images are also the result of response to materials and process, free association and following intuitive impulses.

Wild locations that have had an impact on my work include western Ireland, where I am a Fellow at Ballinglen Arts Foundation, and northern New Mexico where my husband and I have a winter home. I’ve also spent significant time in northern Sweden, the Catalonia region of Spain, northern Italy and the North Island of New Zealand. Painting satisfies a basic need for me-- a channel to my inner self, a reflection of these meaningful experiences, and a path to new discoveries. I’ve been painting professionally for over 30 years, and remain challenged and energized by my process. I work with a balance of spontaneity and careful editing, moving back and forth from intuitive flow to thoughtful analysis. My aim is to achieve structural integrity and strength through the accumulation of quiet passages and nuanced surfaces. I build up multiple layers of paint mixed with cold wax medium. Sometimes the layers are thick and textural, other times they are thin veils of color. The layers are selectively scratched, eroded and dissolved, an approach that reflects natural processes of the rugged places I love". — Rebecca Crowell

Carol Dalton: Written In The Sand

Jen Tough Hemsley
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APRIL 27 - MAY 10, 2018

OPENING RECEPTION SATURDAY, MAY 05, 5:00-7:00 (DURING BENICIA'S OPEN STUDIOS)

Carol is primarily a painter, also working with mixed media, collage, and printmaking.  She starts with collaged and pigmented paintings on board, and scores, scrapes, and abrades, and marks, creating rough textured surfaces.  Washes of pigment are added, distilling the surfaces and infusing them with a powerful and balanced presence.

Recent works are concerned with environmental and communication issues.   Dalton’s sensitivity to her materials and her regard for her subjects, brings depth and authenticity to the pieces.  She inspires non artists and artists alike with a layered beauty and intensity to her work.

Carol studied at the Santa Barbara Art Institute from 1971-1974. She has shown in the Bay Area for many years since moving there after art school, and has work in museum, corporate, and private collections. She maintains an active studio practice in Benicia, California.

Call for Entries: Marin Museum of Contemporary Art

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Jen Tough will be the juror for Marin MOCA's "Make Your Mark" exhibition
Hurry! Submission deadline: April 20, 2018 (by midnight PST)

Exhibit Dates: June 16 – July 29, 2018
Reception: June 16, 5 – 7pm

THEME
Artists use marks to create form, line, pattern and texture. Mark-making can be loose and spontaneous or intentionally controlled and structured. Marks can be descriptive, expressive, conceptual, photographic or symbolic, and appear across all genres of artwork from abstract to representational. A mark can be made with a splash or drip of paint, or a thread through space. From Vincent Van Gogh to Cy Twombly, mark-making has been an integral part of the artistic process yet it can be elusive to define. We’re interested in seeing how you make marks to create your artwork. 2D or 3D artwork will be accepted in any medium.

JUROR  Jen Tough
Jen Tough Gallery is a contemporary gallery and art consultancy located in Benicia, California. Programming includes an ambitious exhibition schedule comprised of solo shows rotating every several weeks, multiple art fairs, and the management of Opus – an invitational artist collective for independent artists. Jen Tough has a BFA from the Ohio State University, attending the Art Academy of Cincinnati and Parsons School of Design program in West Africa. She was the Art Director for Urban Outfitters, Hollywood Records, Warner Bros Records, numerous national magazines, and was a creative consultant for Nike for many years.

CALL FOR ENTRIES
Open to all U.S. resident artists 18 and over. You are invited to submit up to 5 digital images of your original artwork completed in the past five years, not previously shown in a MarinMOCA or Artists of MarinMOCA exhibit.  Artists currently represented by the juror are ineligible for this call. This exhibit is open to all art media. Only online entries with digitally uploaded images will be accepted. Oversized artworks that do not have a waiver will not be juried.  Digital entries must be RECEIVED via online application on or before midnight, FRIDAY PST, April 20, 2018. Notification will be by online list of accepted artwork and via email.

More info can be found here: https://www.marinmoca.org/call-for-entries/

Susan Stover: Reveries + Reliquaries

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Opening Reception: Saturday, April 07, 5:00-7:00

Reveries and Reliquaries is composed of paintings and sculptures that recall an ethnic sensibility and geometric organization. Adapting processes that are traditionally used in the production of textiles, Stover uses materials and techniques that recall a collective history with the completed painting and forms revealing themselves in the making. Stover explores the meditative qualities of repetitive labor involved in stamping, stitching and constructing, along with how these created objects and textiles are tied to identity, status and religious beliefs in various cultures.

The exhibition features an entirely new body of work for the artist, including small freestanding sculptures and large and medium scale mixed media wall pieces incorporating encaustic wax. The majority of these new works have a similar color palette, primarily white, grey and muted earth tones creating a quiet and meditative installation and grouping.

Susan Stover received an MFA from CCA in Oakland, and a BFA from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, with both degrees concentrating on textiles and painting. She has shown extensively across the US and is known for her teaching and workshops given in her studio.

Diane Williams + Chuck Potter: Ancestral Convergence

Jen Tough Hemsley
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OPENING RECEPTION: SATURDAY, MARCH 24, 5:00-7:00
FLASH SHOW RUNS MARCH 23-29

Partners in life and in the studio, Diane Williams and Chuck Potter show their latest works in our first flash exhibition. Using earthy materials with an Asian influence such as rust solutions and sumi inks, Diane and Chuck create inspiring large scale abstract works drawing on their common spiritual influences and nature.

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The Three Graces, mixed media triptych on canvas, 2018

DIANE WILLIAMS

"The name of my studio is I AN I. It is a version of the Jamaican Rastafarian term “I and I”. Living in Jamaica for 10 years as a young woman, I adopted the concept of “I and I”. To paraphrase the words of Rastafari scholar E. E. Cashmore: “I and I is an expression to totalize the concept of oneness..... I and I means that God is within all...”

I have come to realize that “I and I” also encompasses a relationship with our ancestors. Our DNA connects us with our familial history going back to the dawn of time and we carry the wisdom of the ancients in our genes. Additionally our ancestors include our artistic influences whether related by blood or simply a connection of the heart and a common bond.

My recent work is an exploration of my ancient roots as a weaver, and a farmer. Pieces like “The Gatekeeper” and “Weaver’s Tale” use hand cut stencil and scrappers to mimic patterns and folds of fabric. “Woven Field” pays tribute to the fertile soil where life springs forth in the form of flowers. “The Three Graces” harkens back to to Asian ancestery, honoring the Bird and Flower painters of China.

My pallate of rich earth tones, and rust  draws a connection with the land and the patina of time. Large brusbstrokes are my physical relationship with my work, mapping my journery as an artist. I have become acutely aware as a mature artist, that my future is merely a continuation of the ancient past and we are all connected by common threads." —Diane Williams

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Take a Stand, mixed media on canvas, 48x44, 2018

CHUCK POTTER

"I believe in a creative source greater than myself. Painting is my spiritual practice, a form of prayer that connects me to my ancestors. I speak of ancestors as those influences that are passed down through generations not only in the physical sense of DNA, but also through shared experience that I like to reference as shared consciousness. My approach to the canvas invites a gathering of my ancestors into a shared vision where I can embrace a larger creative energy. I can paint surfaces and textures abstracted from nature and beyond where beauty is more complicated than something that is pleasing to the eye. Consider the grandeur of a mountain range in contrast with the surfaces, textures, and color of rocks found in a creek. Both the mountain and the rock share a common source, but I respond differently to each of them. Using homemade rust solutions, sumi ink, acrylic paints, and other mixed media on a wet plaster surface, I can record my own body movements and responses into the surface. The marks I leave behind become a journal of my shared ancestral experience and an invitation for the viewer to partake." 
—Chuck Potter

Lisa Rosenstreich: Material Investigations, Opens Friday, March 09

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Join us for the solo exhibition of Ukiah artist Lisa Rosenstreich, opening Friday, March 09 with an opening reception Saturday, March 10 5:00-7:00. 

Lisa Rosenstreich’s mixed media work explores both abstraction and figuration. Obsessed with color and pattern, she works in oil, cold wax, acrylic and collage. Her work reflects an interest
in the natural world and human interaction. Utilizing a vivid, subjective color pallet, she constructs images through the building of layers of paint and paper, often constructing and deconstructing a surface many times before the final composition emerges. Ranging in size from 16” x 16” to 50” x 122”, this series of paintings and collages focus largely on formal aspects of shape, color and line; in part inspired by her experience teaching fundamental art and design concepts to students. Rosenstreich is an Assistant Professor of Art at Mendocino College in Ukiah, CA where she teaches painting, drawing, design, and art history while also managing the college’s art gallery.

Opening Friday, February 23: Tangential

Jen Tough Hemsley
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TANGENTIAL
Mark Ashworth, Ridj Johnson and Jenny Phillips

FEBRUARY 23 - MARCH 08

RECEPTION: SATURDAY, MARCH 03, 5:00-7:00

A small group invitational featuring three Bay Area artists whose work plays with line and form in varying media. Mark Ashworth's work focuses on colorful and bold shapes that fluidly fill his large canvases full of motion. Ridj Johnson's at once delicate and bold shape and line work tell almost tribal stories with their patterns and repetition. Jenny Phillips work is quiet, serene and minimalistic, focusing on hairlike strokes in encaustic wax. This show is not to missed if you're interested in current Bay Area art trends.

Gallery Hours: Mon-Thurs open 10:00-7:00 for private viewings; Friday 1:00 - 6:00; Saturday 11:00 - 7:00; Sunday 11:00 - 6:00. For a private viewing, please contact Karadan@JenTough.Gallery

Grand Re-Opening and Opening Reception: Lisa Pressman, "The Heart of It"

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Solo Exhibition
Lisa Pressman: The Heart of It
February 09 – February 22, 2018

Jen Tough Gallery, 942 Tyler Street, Benicia

Opening reception: February 10, 5—7pm

Jen Tough Gallery is pleased to announce the opening of The Heart Of It, a solo exhibition of works from New Jersey-based American abstract painter Lisa Pressman, on view at 942 Tyler Street in Benicia from February 09 – February 22, 2018. Opening reception is February 10, 5-7pm. This will be the artist’s second showing at Jen Tough Gallery with work previously in the group invitational exhibition, Women In The Abstract in 2017.

Pressman’s vibrant, moody work explores transformation and movement, using vessels, windows, doors, and imagery relating to the inside/outside metaphor. In The Heart of It, Pressman turns inward, focusing on where the work comes from, “turning the outside noise down and tuning in to the inside.”

The exhibition features new work alongside previous in which Pressman has created and used abstract imagery of transport in order to suggest the passage from “human vibrancy and entropy.” In the catalogue for Passing Through, John Seed comments, “Pressman is attracted to the personal and the familiar, which she recasts into explorations of mood and color. Working in series, she creates families of imagery that share thematic points of departure while generating individual works that are discrete and distinctive”

Lisa Pressman was born in Elizabeth, New Jersey in 1958. She earned her BA in Art from Douglass College, Rutgers University and her MFA from Bard College. Her work focuses on a visual synthesis of stored and personal memory.

Gallery Hours: Mon-Thurs open 10:00-7:00 by appointment; Friday 1:00 - 6:00; Saturday 11:00 - 7:00; Sunday 11:00 - 6:00. For more information, please contact jentoughgallery@gmail.com

California Inked: A Survey of Works from the California Society of Printmakers

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Curated by California College of the Arts Professor and master printmaker Thomas Wojak, this show highlights both friends and society members. Artists include: Jonathan Barcan, Barbara Foster, Mark Johnsen, Sandra Kelch, Robin McCloskey, Michelle Murillo, Carrie Ann Plank, Luz Marina Ruiz, Robynn Smith, Jack Stone, Toru Sugita, Colleen Sullivan and Thomas Wojak. Image above, "Map" by Robin Mccloskey

Opening reception Saturday, Dec 9, 5:00 - 7:00

Artist Spotlight: Jeff Snell

Jen Tough Hemsley
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Jeff Snell grew up in a rural setting outside Baltimore, Maryland surrounded by woods and small streams. He has always maintained a deep connection to the natural world. Even in his most abstract pieces, one can feel a sense of navigating through passages. Living and working for some time now in Northern California, his work often reflects shifts and movements in his surroundings, where change is constant.

Snell creates dynamic compositions with spaces that shift between dimensional space and purely textural surfaces. He has an approach that allows for improvisation and chance discoveries... the act of creation is central to the content of his work. Kinetic energy is tangible and a variety of textures are developed with custom tools and multiple applications of material. “My objective is to maintain a fierce connection with the developing work that is raw as well as elegant.”

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