Of the Body, For the Body

Large-format works are curated in a visceral exhibit

JM. Sitting, Kacey Moran

Large-format, emotionally courageous paintings from three artists comprise an exhibit, Indivisible, running through March 5 at Continuum ART in Hendersonville. Katie Montes (gallery cofounder along with Cody Reed) says this show, as with all of Continuum’s exhibits, relies on interconnected themes to spark discussions about how we humans view things, and why we behave in certain ways. 

“All of our exhibits center around the philosophical and scientific discussion regarding the human condition,” Montes explains. 

She adds, “The pieces were curated because they followed certain rules in their mark making that was somewhat the same, but also uniquely different.”

Painter Jeffrey Luque, who’s Brevard-based, describes it this way: “We cannot remove our inner being no matter what perception of our exterior is predetermined by the viewer.” He plays with one’s visual perception in his vivid portraits by creating distinctive painting layers in a laborious process that adds visual and conceptual depth to his works.

Kasey Moran, another of the exhibit’s artists from Western North Carolina, says, “For me, the process of exploring and being open to create … means accepting flaws, strengths, failures, and successes.” Her abstract oils bloom with a suggestion of landscape, particularly flora, and her nude studies emote with profound, subtly rendered emotion. “Every person views art through their own experience,” she says. “Being human is a paradox, since a lot of things can be true at the same time.” 

Lilium Candidum, Jeffrey Luque

Portuguese artist Duarte Vitória is known for figurative paintings that are fraught with a kind of passionate combat. Limbs are shown intertwined in a kind of exhilarating desperation. Often, there is blood.

“I see the human body as the biggest challenge for a visual artist. From the body, I gain access to the visceral emotional state of the human being,” says Vitória. His work invites the viewer to explore such dualities of the human condition as pain and pleasure, mind and body, life and death.

The pieces in the exhibit are big (each of Luque’s pieces, for example, measure 58” x 72”) and thus have a powerful collective impact. Montes recommends visiting the gallery at various times to experience the paintings in different lighting — and perhaps, in the process, gain another level of understanding.

 “Some of the pieces have underlying details that could not be revealed unless one asks about the relevance and personal stories of the subjects,” she remarks.

Continuum Art, 147-C 1st Ave. East, downtown Hendersonville. Indivisible, with works by Jeffrey Luque, Kasey Moran, and Duarte Vitória, runs through Sunday, March 5. For more information, call 828-435-3300 or see continuumartnc.com.

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