Chefas Projects is delighted to introduce Portland-based painter Emily Wise in Gallery 2 this month with a new collection of paintings: Hands that Hold the Melting Rope. Inspired by myth-making and relationships women build with themselves and other women, Wise invites the viewer into a heavenly world of organized chaos. Each piece explodes with dizzying layers of detail and weaves a surreal, overarching narrative as it follows a grouping of central figures on a journey through otherworldly terrain.

"On a night drive to 7-11 to get snacks, a group of women in a '99 Toyota Corolla unwittingly cross an invisible boundary," Wise explains. "That very night, the veil between worlds had thinned just long enough to rocket their bodies into some kind of 'heaven' not unlike this world. Marooned in this new existence with no ability or desire to go back, they begin to wonder if this place has always been there, waiting for them, within each other."