Portland, Toledo artists featured at Chessman Gallery

Paintings by M.C. Reardon, including “Mixed Blessings,” pictured above, will be on display at the Chessman Gallery as part of its latest art show. (Courtesy photos)

Oregonian artist M.C. Reardon’s “EXHALE: earth” is a collection of paintings and mixed media inspired by ancient Taoist artists. This exhibit also features a series of Reardon’s FOREST photographs, along with new work by clay artist Chasse Davidson, echoing the textures of the forest. The opening reception will take place on Friday, Nov. 8, from 5 to 7 p.m. with wine and refreshments.

In “EXHALE: earth,” Reardon explores the current state of dissonance between humanity and the planet using ancient Taoist art as both inspiration and vehicle of expression. The Taoist artworks that influenced the work for this show came from many sources, but primarily from the project “Taoism and the Arts of China,” created by Stephen Little for the Art Institute of Chicago.

The “FOREST” series of photographs contains Reardon’s personal memories of the forest, particularly in the Pacific Northwest. Author Joanna Macy once wrote: “As we work to heal the Earth, the Earth heals us.”

Reardon hopes this work will inspire audiences to contemplate the idea of wild nature simply enduring; going about its daily business, living in the present moment, at peace — and yet, still influenced by human presence.

Exhibited with Reardon’s works is an exquisite display of clay art by Chasse Davidson.

Chasse’s journey with clay began 22 years ago. Early on, female form was her central focus, although she now works primarily with wheel thrown vessels. For this exhibit she has a new body of work that is inspired by the textures and patterns found in coastal forests. Davidson finds endless possibilities in experimenting with the proportions of bottles, vases, and vessels as she joins and alters her pieces. She has worked extensively with raku and horse hair firing techniques, and since recently acquiring a larger raku kiln, her work is growing in scale.

Chasse is the leading pottery and ceramics instructor at the Toledo Clayworks in Toledo. Located on Main Street, in a beautifully remodeled historic building in the heart of Toledo, this space is a creative hub within the community.

The Chessman Gallery is inside the Lincoln City Cultural Center at 540 NE Hwy. 101 in Lincoln City. For more information about this show or any of the many events going on at the Lincoln City Cultural Center, call 541-994-9994, head to lincolncity-culturalcenter.org, or become a friend on Facebook.