Exhibits at Hoyt interpret nature

Staff report


At first glance, it might appear as though the paintings of Lori Anne Boocks and Christine Neill, now on display at the Hoyt Institute of Fine Art, are purely derived from nature.

However, both of these artists, like researchers, investigate, collect data, rearrange, and present their findings through unique interpretations.

The works by Boocks, featured in the West Gallery, are mysteriously reminiscent of the subtle landscape paintings of J.M.W. Turner or Chinese ink paintings, and are many steps beyond a sublime landscape.

What at first appears to be muted trees or a mountainous terrain reveals itself as a gnarled tangle of words — layer upon layer fading into and out of view.

The Germantown, Md., artist rehashes and reworks the stories of her family and friends into her work until the words become the art and represent the feeling of the story.

In contrast, the delicate translucent works by Baltimore artist Christine Neill, in the East Gallery, offer a different kind of experience.

With the mind of a botanist and the hand of a 19th- century illustrator, Neill multilayers digital imagery with watercolors to create fluid works that speak to the spirit of nature rather than an analytical study.

She describes these works as “… exploring the intricacies of the natural world that parallel those of human life. It is a reminder that all individuals have a deep-rooted connection to the earth and that similar biological processes bind the natural and human worlds.”

The Hoyt will celebrate these two nationally recognized artists at a public reception Friday from 6 to 8 p.m.

Standard gallery hours at the museum are Tuesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For information, call 724-652-2882 or go to hoytartcenter.org.

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