Eleanor Harwood Gallery is delighted to announce its summer exhibition: “Escape” with Drew Bennett, Kelly Carámbula, and Motonori Uwasu.
“Escape” is a group show celebrating the transformative nature of summer. Whether we stretch our toes in the sand, go on a road trip, spend time daydreaming and creating in the studio, we all escape a bit, and more so in summer. The days are longer and our imaginations and ranges are larger. The expansive nature of more daylight prods our desires to get out, to explore.
Each artist points to various forms of escape, ranging from summer vacations and daydreaming, to finding solace and growth in challenging emotional situations. They remind us of the profound impact that moments of escape can have on our lives, providing an opportunity for reflection, rejuvenation, and inspiration.
Drew Bennett frequently depicts the California landscape populated by his family and friends on various outdoor excursions. Using washy oil paint, he leaves parts of his birch panels visible, capturing the undulations and sheen in the wood. For “Escape," Bennett is exhibiting a series of small paintings that originated as A/B tests. He experimented with different substrates such as canvas, and different paint mediums, painting each image twice. What we see exhibited are the A tests.
Kelly Carámbula uses ceramics and bold colored glazes to create the new body of work in “Escape." Her works frequently serve as a means to work through complex emotions. Her pieces Feelings Bundle and Meditation on Love and Chaos are good examples of Carámbula’s desire to integrate disparate materials, shapes and textures into sculptures that work as whole, each element adding interest and meaning to the others. Her work is a metaphor for the intricacies in her own family where difficult elements must come together.
Motonori Uwasu paints simplified cartoon-like paintings of cars and homes. They are sourced from vague childhood memories, though are not necessarily biographical. Sasha Bogojev describes the work, stating: “The quietness and remoteness of these scenes are underlined both with the absence of any characters and the exceptionally carefree approach to depicting his motifs. Painted in a clean, graphic way, but with a loose approach to any factual quality, the seemingly flat imagery, in reality, has a lot of oddly laid out depth and volume." The bright blue skies and cars make us think of road trips and visits to friends and family. They nudge us to imagine the people inside the homes or where the cars will head once they pull out of the gas station.
Together the artists show us versions of escape, going to the wilderness, car trips in urban and suburban settings, as well as internal creative journeys. Escape, in its various forms, is a fundamental and generative part of the human experience.
Drew Bennett was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1981. He graduated from Colorado College in 2004 with a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts. Bennett’s solo exhibitions include Ever Gold [Projects] (San Francisco, CA) 2019 and 2020, Chandran Gallery (San Francisco, CA), and Halsey McKay (Hamptons, NY). Bennett has also been in group shows at Gertrude Gallery (Tiberon, CA), Ever Gold [Projects] (San Francisco, CA), and Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (Berkeley, CA). His work is in the Berkeley Art Museum Collection. He has installed murals at Facebook locations in both London, UK and Fremont, CA. Bennett is the founder of the Facebook Artist in Residence Program. He now lives in Oakland, California with his wife and son, working out of the studio he built under their home, nestled around Coastal Live Oak and Redwoods in the Oakland Hills of California.
Kelly Carámbula is a San Francisco-based artist and sculptor. Her work explores elements of acceptance and control, often incorporating surprises that encourage the viewer to look closer, longer, or from a different perspective. She is continually interested and inspired by the tactile relationships between color and form— using clay, wood, and metal as her primary mediums. She has exhibited at Rare Device, Legion Projects and is represented by Eleanor Harwood Gallery in San Francisco.
Born in Osaka Japan in 1975, Motonori Uwasu graduated in Fine Art from Osaka University of Arts in 1999. Uwasu's solo exhibitions include Gallery wks. (Osaka, Japan), Yod Gallery (Osaka, Japan), Motif (Kagawa, Japan), and Moosey (Norwich, UK). He has also participated in group exhibitions at Museum of Young Art (Vienna, Austria), Campbell Project Space (Sydney, Australia), Dell'Arte art gallery (Tokyo, Japan), Gallery Out of Place (Nara, Japan), Cadan Yurakucho (Tokyo, Japan), Nothing At All (Hong Kong), and The Fridge (New York, US). His work calls back to childhood experiences in the back seat of his parents’ car, driving to unknown destinations and watching distorted images of buildings and houses lined up outside. He lives in Higashi-Osaka, Japan with his wife and five cats. There are so many factories in Higashi-Osaka, and there are many factories around his home and studio.