Black Rock Center for the Arts welcomes two artists to its Germantown galleries on Saturday with an opening reception for the exhibits of Wayson Jones and Dorothy Fall.
The event begins at 5 p.m. with Jones discussing his work. From 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. the artists will be available as visitors look at the exhibits. Jones’ exhibit, Black President and Other Paintings, is in the main gallery, and Fall’s Forest Spirits is in the terrace gallery.
Black President and Other Paintings is Jones’ first political series and includes abstract paintings in black, white and gray.
Through abstraction, Jones said he could express his political ambivalence without forcing his ideas on the viewer. Jones, of Prince George’s County, always comes back to compositions that suggest a face, he said. He used acrylic paints with powdered graphite on many of the pieces.
His work on the series began with the painting titled Black President, which led to others that “reflect the extreme racist backlash against President Obama,” Jones said. He felt upset by what he saw as “behavior that was unprecedented in terms of resistance,” to the president during his first term in office. The work later dissolved into expressions of his disillusionments with the president’s surveillance policies.
In his artist talk on Saturday, Jones plans to tell his story as an artist and discuss how throughout his career he has kept returning to facial compositions.
Fall, of Washington D.C., will also be present to discuss her work on display upstairs in the terrace gallery. Unrelated to Jones’ work, her show Forest Spirits shows forest scenes in large drawings, monotypes and multi-panel paintings.
“Whenever I travel I’m very taken with trees in the area,” Fall said. The trees in exhibit are inspired by those she has seen in Costa Rica and Vermont.
“I feel, when I walk through the forest... feel as if I were being watched, as if there were spirits in the forest,” she said. Many of her works, especially those in which female figures are incorporated into the scene, begin with the Greek myth of Daphne and Apollo, she explained. In the myth, Daphne turns into a tree to escape Apollo’s pursuit.
She described the pieces as emotional and free flowing.
The shows will be up from June 11 until July 3 and are open and free to the public. Black Rock Center for the Arts at 12901 Town Commons Dr., Germantown, hosts exhibits of different artists monthly.