‘Artists and Friends,’ Middle Street’s annual variety show

This month and next, Middle Street Gallery in Sperryville puts on its annual “Artists and Friends” exhibition, in which members of the artists’ cooperative show their works alongside those of selected guests.

The show, which runs through Feb. 8, includes an opening reception from 3 to 5 this Saturday (Jan. 10), with guest artists introduced at 3:15pm.

The public is invited to come and see a broad array of subjects, styles and media from some 25 artists from Rappahannock County and nearby.

Bob Bouquet will offer three sculptures about life on earth — from one day to two million years old — including a wooden, humanoid skull. His friend, former gallery member Kevin Adams, will show two paintings inspired by a recent trip to Iceland. Ann Currie will offer colored pencil and graphite images of fruit, vegetables and inanimate objects on watercolor infused surfaces, while her guest, Mary Anne Matteson of Warrenton, will show bright, bold still lifes in oil.

Photographer Carl Zitzmann will show a winter snowscape from Amissville, while his German artist friend, Lis Piatt, will exhibit two pastels. Fellow photographer Jo Levine’s photos capture the dreamlike atmosphere created by fog and mist, and her friend, printmaker Margaret Rogers — also known for her work at Sperryville’s Central Coffee Roasters — will show two of her intricately detailed prints.

Gallery president Kathleen Willingham has paired with Gary Colson, with Willingham showing paintings of natural forms in earthy colors and Colson offering sculptures of stone and recycled encyclopedias. Thomas Spande will offer two meticulously drawn views of the Hazel River accompanied by linocut mixed media on wood veneer from former gallery member Patricia Underwood.

Phyllis Northup offers two cool-toned watercolors, one of a remote island and shoreline in Lake Superior. Her friend, watercolorist Nadia Louderback, follows with still lifes of autumn apples and spring crocuses in warmer tones. Photographer Gary Anthes will exhibit two landscapes in the somber tones of winter, accompanied by the colorful pastels of JoEllen Murphy. Murphy specializes in views of Rappahannock painted in the plein air tradition.

Nancy Brittle and guest watercolorist Mary Allen of Culpeper “share a love of color, design, and narrative,” Brittle says, and their paintings “offer us a personal connection to our worlds.” Meanwhile Leslie Hilton will exhibit two new portraits in oil and introduce Mary Frazer, an emerging artist from Warrenton who paints still lifes and local landscapes.

Wayne Paige has chosen two artist friends, former gallery member Matthew Plumb and Maureen Paige, a painter and retired art teacher from from Occoquan. Plumb’s paintings “are inspired by cultural sources both high and low, such as comic books, landscape painting, animation, fabric and wallpaper patterns, and Pop Art,” Plumb says.

Painter Rosabel Goodman-Everard is paired with friend Ronda Gregorio, a wedding photographer, with two distinctly non-wedding photos of animals.

Photographer Susan Raines shows images of two old buildings in Little Washington and is joined by painter Barbara Meteo Serbent and photographer Jim Serbent. Finally, Helen Berliner has teamed with artist Margaret Hamilton, whose small delicate watercolors of vast vistas endeavor to capture “the subtleties that can’t be put into words,” according to Hamilton.

The gallery, next to River District Arts at 3 River Lane in Sperryville, is optn 11 to 5 Friday-Sunday. Call 540-987-9330 or visit middlestreetgallery.org for more information.

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