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The Washington Post       February 9, 2018

In the galleries: An artist pieces together his life story

By Mark Jenkins 


Kiki McGrath’s The Emperor of Ice Cream

 

In the abstract paintings of “Helicon,” also at Studio, D.C. artist Kiki McGrath contrasts forms that are hard-edged and geometric with ones that are soft and loose. The works on canvas are colorful, yet less striking than the large wall drawing that offers a similar juxtaposition in black and white. The black square at the piece’s center is flanked by freer gestures on both sides, and the spirals on the left diminish into lines that emulate the shape of a 3-D element: a set of hanging branches. Painted black, the wood resembles a brushstroke in midair, hinting that even the simplest jotting owes its essence to nature.

 

Jean Jinho Kim: The Space in Between and Kiki McGrath: Helicon Through Feb. 24 at Studio Gallery, 2108 R St. NW. 202-232-8734. studiogallerydc.com.


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Kiki McGrath:  Helicon  

January 31 - February 24, 2018

 

First Friday Reception: February 2,  6 - 8pm

Artist Reception: Saturday February 10, 5 - 7pm

 

2108 R Street NW

Washington DC, 20008

202.232.8734

www.studiogallerydc.com

Wed-Fri 1-6pm, Sat 11-6pm

 


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Messenger, copy after fresco in the Basilica di San Francesco, Assisi, Italy


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The Washington Post

In the galleries: An early spring is always welcome

By Mark Jenkins  February 17, 2017

 

Kiki McGrath & Jean Jinho Kim

Swirls of green suggest the botanical origins of Kiki McGrath’s expressionist abstractions, but the local artist also has drawn on another source, examples of which are part of this Studio Gallery show. Alongside the paintings, “Aerial Roots” displays three sculptures inspired by ikebana — Japanese flower-arranging — and made by local devotees of the art form.

These are large, burly and far from traditional. Rather than dainty flowers and grasses, the assemblages feature log-size branches and unnatural accents; one incorporates chunks of vine painted orange. With them, McGrath has installed a black rubber hose, coiled and hanging in midair. The shape of this gardening accessory echoes the spirals in the paintings and pays an amusing tribute to ikebana. The found-object sculpture is not flower-arranging, but it is an act of transformation, and that’s an fundamental theme of Japanese art.

 

Downstairs, Jean Jinho Kim has clustered everyday objects in ways that complement “Aerial Roots.” The Leesburg artist’s “No Boundaries” is more far-ranging, but it does include glittering mock butterflies and — in a piece titled “Garden 1 60-12” — two roselike blooms. If Kim’s assemblages include many industrial materials, there is a hint of ikebana amid the car parts and LEDs.

 

Kiki McGrath: Aerial Roots and Jean Jinho Kim: No Boundaries On view through Feb. 25 at Studio Gallery, 2108 R St. NW. 202-232-8734. studiogallerydc.com.

 

 


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