Mercer Island galleries will introduce new artists this week, in connection with the First Friday art walk event from 5 p.m.-8 p.m. on Nov. 2.
Clarke and Clarke Art and Artifacts (7605 SE 27th St. #105) will host the opening of “Undercurrent” by Valaree Cox and showcase two new artists, Noble Golden and Susanne Werner.
Golden’s “Spirit Bowls” are non-traditional compositions that incorporate the use of folded and layered paper, encaustic and gold or silver leaf inks, gallery co-owner Ginny Clarke noted in a press release, adding that “they are not literal containers but vessels for memories, mystery and meaning” and “each vessel is unique.”
In Werner’s non-literal abstract paintings, she layers pigment and found objects into “controlled accidents with no attempt at literal translation.” Born and educated in Germany, she is mostly self-taught and now teaches art classes in the Northwest and shows her work internationally.
Meanwhile, Cox returns to present an entirely new body of work in paint and plaster. The paintings express her vision of beauty and emotion in dramatic colors that meld into subtle monotones, Clarke wrote.
Suzanne Zahr’s SZ Gallery (2441 76th Ave. SE #160) will continue showing works by Lucia Neagu, a local Mercer Islander and artist who continues to expand her artistic world. Her current exhibit, “Self-Realized,” includes her most recent works to date.
The Mercer Island Visual Arts League (MIVAL) Gallery (2836 78th Ave. SE) will host a First Friday opening reception themed “Connections.”
New wine bar Barrels (7605 SE 27th St. #107) also aims to showcase a different artist each month. Its gallery will feature Aaron Hazel’s works through Nov. 3, and it will start showing art by Jen Chambers on Nov. 4.
Hazel’s “Beyond Football,” which depicts Colin Kaepernick, “definitely has people thinking,” according to Barrels co-owners Joe and Tina Kennedy.
Chambers was born and raised in the Northwest and obtained a degree in interior design. She found her true passion as a mixed media artist in 2005 and never looked back. Chambers works with acrylic mixed medias as well as encaustics. Her style, although always highly textural, ranges greatly, allowing her freedom in artistic experimentation, resulting in constant evolution. Her work can be found at Gray Sky Gallery in Seattle as well as C. Michele Interior Lifestyles on Mercer Island.