Eleanor Harwood Gallery is delighted to announce our 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.