BANDON - "Heat and Light," paintings by Christine Hanlon, photographs by Jan Ayers, and in the cases, South Coast Woodturners will be featured through Nov. 30 at the Bandon Library Art Gallery, 1204 11th St. SW. There will be a reception for the artists from 2-4 p.m. Sunday Oct. 20, in the library's Sprague Room.
Hanlon returns to the Library Art Gallery after an absence of five years. One of Bandon's best technical painters, she renders scenes from life with an unerring eye for composition and emotional impact. Her little watercolors tell big stories: of heroism, hard work in the face of danger, while also capturing the beauty of great fires. For millennia, humans have worshiped fire as a sacred and divine force with cleansing power, for good and for ill. Its often uncontrollable nature fills people with fear and awe. Hanlon manages to capture those feelings despite, or perhaps because of, the small scale of these paintings. Move in close to see the figures lit in a field of darkness, and take in the magnitude of what the firefighters face and what they do. These images radiate heat and light.
The photos by Ayers are extreme closeup images of her husband's bronze sculptures, but in this context take on the qualities of molten metal and charred wood, revealing new mysteries in their abstraction. Again, the power of fire is brought to bear here, in the melting and shaping of metal and the ability to tame it in the service of art.
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The South Coast Woodturners continue the theme of forests and fire with handmade bowls and other practical objects, some of which are decorated by burning patterns into the wood. Made with local woods, these pieces marry functionality and aesthetics beautifully.
The Library Art Gallery is open during regular library hours, Tuesday-Saturday.