A new gallery downtown is filling a very important niche, and they have some great work on display right now. Prelude Gallery, near 20th and Pine, is a showcase for current students and recent graduates — many of whom were referred by their teachers. There are a wide array of styles and something for almost every taste. Plus, graduating in this economic climate is rough, so you can help support emerging artists when they need it the most.
The space itself is brimming with work from a number of artists, and there are definitely plenty of images and techniques represented: photography, illustration, painting, and prints, to name a few.
One talented and well-represented artist is Angela McQuillan. She has a number of mixed-media works, which include paint, stitching, wires and photographs. With a background and interest in biology and science, many of her pieces look as if they came right out of an electron microscope. Wispy colors and cellular images merge together into abstract, textured forms. The scale of her work varies a lot — from the 16-by-18 inch “Invasion” to the massive 48-by-48 inch “Intermingled Functionalry.” Science and art overlap astoundingly in her work, which is both smart and stunning.
Ryan Mohl’s colorful renditions represent Philly well in both their skyline representations and their illustrative graffiti-style. Dark outlines and bold colors are his go-to. One can easily imagine his small canvases painted on a much larger scale among Philadelphia’s many public murals.
Also worth checking out are Lori Evensen’s piece “Ribbons,” a wonderful study of movement and line, Kyle Deal’s landscapes of North Philly, which are somewhat reminiscent of Edward Hopper, Benjamin Gonzales’ tiny collages and large-scale paintings and Danielle Finger’s trippy ink drawing “Seasaw.”
Don’t forget Rittenhouse galleries do Second Fridays. Stop in for Prelude’s next reception on August 12, and meet some of the artists while you’re downtown.
Prelude Gallery is located at 406 S. 20th St. between Lombard and Pine; 215-966-7228.