Rawls Museum Arts opens new exhibition

Published 12:00 pm Saturday, August 1, 2015

The Rawls Museum Arts launched a new gallery exhibition on July 21, featuring paintings by J.M. Henry and sculpture by Jayson Lowery.

Jayson Lowery’s sculpture titled “Passage.” -- Walter Francis Jr. | Tidewater News

Jayson Lowery’s sculpture titled “Passage.” — Walter Francis Jr. | Tidewater News

“We called the exhibition ‘Studio Meditations’ because of the way both artists work,” said Leigh Anne Chambers, executive director of the museum. “When they are working in the studio, they handle complex ideas, with [Henry’s] color palettes and [Lowery’s] sculptures. I just thought that the two artists would complement each other well.”

Henry mostly contributed landscapes and color studies to the show.

“I’ve always liked colors. You know, playing with color and the feeling of paint and the various ways you can make paint act,” he said. “There’s an element of minimalism in my work. Keeping the drawing simple is what makes it clear that the color is what I’m trying to get across here.”

Lowery, a professor at the College of William and Mary, began sculpting at 19.

“I grew up in Phoenix, and as a kid I would go into the desert and find pieces of trash and make things out of them,” he said.

Lowery presented several sculptures, using varied materials such as water putty, polysteryne foam, fiberglass, wood, marble, brass and even galvanized steel.

“I tend to work in series, and sometimes I’ll work on one project and it will lead me in another direction,” he said.

Both artists agreed that their work is intuitive.

“It’s hard to describe a process,” said Henry.

“You just kind of feel it,” added Lowery.

“I’ve been very excited for the work that both artists do,” Chambers said. “[Henry] has produced a lot of work in the past year and many of these pieces have never been seen before. And Jayson is very productive as well. I had some sort of idea how it would look when we started, but I was really pleased with how it turned out.”

The exhibition will run until Aug. 31. The Museum’s next exhibition, opening Sept. 12, will feature paintings on canvas and paper from Sally Bowring and Amie Oliver.