Three New Exhibitions on Display at Gallery 78

Category: arts 99

Gallery 78 opened three new exhibitions last week featuring work by Alexandrya Eaton, Jared Betts, and Colin Smith.

Sunshine Magnolia by Alexandrya Eaton • acrylic on canvas/acrylique sur toile, Unframed, cropped for display.

A new month means new work on display at Gallery 78. From the many vibrant paintings by Alexandrya Eaton and Jared Betts accenting the fall season’s gorgeous natural colour palette, to Colin Smith’s visual shorthand depictions of birds and geography, this month’s exhibitions cover a wide range of unique styles and creative vision.

Studio Sunflowers by Alexandrya Eaton

Colour Fields by Alexandrya Eaton

Alexandrya Eaton is a contemporary Canadian visual artist whose practice includes painting, textile, sculpture, and weaving. She is currently pursuing a Master of Fine Arts with an interdisciplinary approach.

Eaton’s newest solo exhibition, Colour Fields, delves further into the role of bold colours when depicting delicate flora. Gravitating towards striking colour blocks that build in relationship to those under and around it, creating relief-like texture, Eaton is an expert at merging the familiar with abstract dynamism.

In a practice spanning over thirty years, Eaton has had close to fifty solo exhibitions, participated in numerous group exhibitions, and her work can be found in many private and public collections.

In addition to two solo exhibitions this year, Eaton’s work will be part of the exhibition, Dissident Bodies, at the Owens art Gallery in Sackville, as well as groups exhibitions in Vancouver, British Columbia, and New York City.

“I think of each colour as a character with a role to play. Drawing from nature, my paintings capture a joyful feeling of light and life.” – Alexandrya Eaton

Ophelia by Jared Betts. Cropped for display.

Moon Mist by Jared Betts

Jared Betts received his BFA from NASCAD and has exhibited in over 200 exhibitions in Tokyo, Paris, New York, London, Chicago, Iceland, Germany, Costa Rica, and across Canada. Betts has received numerous grants and has participated in several artist residencies around the world. His work is part of many corporate and private collections in Paris, Toronto, Montreal, Los Angeles, China, Australia, and Iceland. 

He is heavily influenced by abstract expressionism, flower gardens, fairies, anime, and saturated colours from the 80s. His approach incorporates gestures and organic forms, working in layers while exploring tensions between the recognizable and abstract.

Jared Betts’ newest solo exhibition aims “to rethink the very parameters of contemporary paintings”, exploring how chromatic mark making relates to artistic ideals in the 21st century.

“My martyristic paintings inhabit the space where consciousness descends into dream, where pattern and colour expand to become an immersive sensory experience. In this celestial space, I seek to examine this dream-like suppression of recognizable imagery and capture the visceral sensations with the sublime nature of drips and the colour field.” – Jared Betts

Below the Dam by Colin Smith.

Birds and Maps by Colin Smith

Colin Smith taught high school art, theatre, and English for 20 years. His work has been exhibited in galleries throughout New Brunswick and is included in many public and private collections. For 11 years, his drawings and cartoons were featured in weekly in the Salon section of the Telegraph Journal. He works out of his studio in the River Art Centre in downtown Florenceville-Bristol.

Colin Smith’s work draws upon his experience as a cartoonist, displaying visual shorthand, directness, and recognition. His works are made with ink, colour washes of ink and watercolour, and tactile paper; encouraging concentration, improvisation, and fluidity.

In this, his first solo exhibition, birds and maps are prominent themes. The former explores the world that the artist has loved and experienced, tracing both real and imagined journeys. While Colin Smith draws everything, birds often feature as they do in life; blurry in flight and racing around the ground.

These exhibitions will be on display (and sale) until October 28th, 2023.

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