Grosse Pointe City, Grosse Pointe Park
It takes two: Artist friends collaborate on new exhibition
Artists and friends Linda Allen and Roselyn Rhodes will be showing their work together at The Loft Fine Art gallery in Mount Clemens.
Posted May 17, 2017
MOUNT CLEMENS — They’ve been friends for years, but artists Linda Allen, of Grosse Pointe City, and Roselyn Rhodes, of Grosse Pointe Park, have never worked together.
So the two longtime Grosse Pointe Artists Association members are excited to be doing a show together. Works by Allen and Rhodes will be on display May 20 through June 4 at The Loft Fine Art gallery in downtown Mount Clemens. Titled “Landscapes to Dreamscapes: Visions by Two Artists,” the exhibition features new work by the two award-winning artists.
“It’s been great,” said Allen of working on the show with Rhodes. “I think we complement each other. We work as a team.”
Rhodes said that when the owners of The Loft invited her to do a solo exhibition, she suggested a two-person show with Allen.
“I liked Linda very much and I had admired her work,” she said.
Rhodes said that, as luck would have it, Deborah Benedic — one of the owners of The Loft — was familiar with Allen and liked her as well.
“It was so sweet and generous of them,” Allen said of the invitation to be part of the show.
Allen and Rhodes are both painters, although Allen draws and works in mixed media and assemblage as well. But stylistically, they’re very different from each other. Allen’s art tends to be more abstract, while Rhodes is known for her plein air landscapes and scenes.
But that has been changing lately, as Allen has been experimenting with landscapes and Rhodes has started putting figures in her works and painting more abstract works influenced by nature
“To see her stretching out and doing abstract shows a lot of growth,” Allen said of Rhodes. “Any good artist grows.”
Both say they’ve always admired each other’s art.
“Linda has a lot of playfulness in her work that I really like,” Rhodes said.
Their work might be different, but Rhodes and Allen are both experts at conveying the beauty around them, whether that’s in an abstract way or in a more realistic manner.
“My plein air — it’s like a natural high,” Rhodes said of painting outdoors. “I want people to understand that feeling I get when the light is hitting that (object). … It’s the light that I’m reacting to — that euphoric feeling of that beautiful spring day.”
She said her paintings are an effort to convey and interpret those emotions. Rhodes said her outdoor painting sessions often inspire her studio works, but the goal in the studio — where she crafts her more abstract pieces — is to express internal emotion through color, texture and motion.
Viewers might find political messages in some of Allen’s recent work, although the messages are subtle and open to interpretation. Allen, a Mount Clemens native, has a sunny disposition, and that spills over into her art.
“I paint to inform, educate and entertain,” Allen said. “And I paint very intuitively.”
Benedic, co-owner of The Loft with Nelson McKinnon, said that Allen and Rhodes have a “similar energy, but different styles.”
“I just think they’re two of the most lovely and creative women of our area,” Benedic said. “They’re always evolving.”
Allen and Rhodes will be on hand for a public opening reception from 6 to 9 p.m. May 20 at The Loft. They’ll also be at the gallery for the closing, from noon to 5 p.m. June 4. The last day of the show coincides with the Art! Macomb — Mount Clemens Art Fair, which runs June 2-4.
“I think it’ll be an interesting show because there will be a lot of different mediums,” Rhodes said.
The artists expect to show about 20 works apiece — with each including larger works along with smaller pieces — although they won’t have a final number until they start to hang the show and see which pieces work together best.
“I’m very excited about this show,” Benedic said. “With all of the (natural) light in our gallery, it will really show their work well.”
The Loft Fine Art is located at 81 Macomb Place in downtown Mount Clemens. For more information, call the gallery at (586) 840-7979 or visit www.theloftfineart.com.
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