Mark Keffer: Microfirmament II, acrylic on paper
At 7 p.m. this Friday, Apr. 24, Gordon Square’s 1point618 hosts an opening reception for its latest exhibitions of paintings by local art veterans John Pearson and Mark Keffer. The artists’ use of geometry makes them a natural pairing.
John Pearson was born in Yorkshire, England. Over the past five decades, Pearson has built and maintained a reputation as one of the most accomplished and prolific artists in the region. His work has been featured in over 100 solo exhibitions throughout the U.S. and around the world; including his very first in London in 1963.
His exhibition at 1Point618, Continuation: Oscillation/Fluctuation Series, includes his large-scale, geometric paintings. Pearson’s interest in man’s spiritual connection to nature, and the structure of how we see and interpret our reality in central to the work in 1Point618’s Main Gallery Space.
Mark Keffer received his BFA from Kent State University, before earning his MFA at Ohio State University in 1991. He’s had solo shows throughout Ohio, as well as in New York City, Phoenix and Greenwich, CT. His last solo show, We Don’t Exist, was at 1Point618 last year.
For his exhibition, titled Erleichda, Keffer presents 10 smaller paintings (all 18” x 14”) on paper and four larger paintings on panel in 1Point618’s Project Space. His work commonly features geometric forms of flat color over atmospheric backgrounds.
“Among other things, two separate dualities are being addressed in this body of work,” explains Keffer. “One is an open-ended relationship between the very large (cosmos) and the very small (cellular based imagery). I donʼt depict these specifically (the paintings are nearly abstract), but I’m inspired by these. The second duality is of object/image. The paintings on panel are shaped to emphasize them as objects while still deploying a degree of pictorial space.”
“There is an existential mindset at work here, a philosophy of no philosophy, guided by a bent toward the ridiculous and a fascination with the fringes of consciousness,” he continues. “The work contains symbols for the unknowable and hints of the far reaches of outer space (and the microscopic) which serve as wry metaphors for the occupations of the mind.”
Keffer’s exhibition’s title, Erleichda, is taken from a song of the same name by Lozen, one of Keffer’s favorite bands. The title originated with author Tom Robbins, and means “Lighten up,” which refers to the serious nature of Keffer’s paintings.
Both exhibitions are free and run through July 11. Additional viewing hours are Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and by appointment.
1Point618, 6421 Detroit Ave., 216-281-1618, 1point618gallery.com