Intuitive and subconscious imagery at Green Lion Gallery
An exhibition of painting and sculpture by Richard Brown Lethem and Judy O’Donnell will open on Friday, June 15 at the Green Lion Gallery, 104 Front Street in Bath. That evening an opening reception will be held at the gallery from 4-7 p.m. during the first Bath Art Walk of the season. The show will continue through July 15.
Lethem’s career has so far spanned over 60 years and earned him recognition literally from coast to coast – his work is in museum collections across the country from California to New York and Maine. He has taught in several university art departments, including at Columbia University and the University of Southern Maine. His work has been featured in many solo shows, especially in New York, Maine, and in the Midwest where he grew up and began his art career. He moved to Maine from New York in 1994, living and working in Bath.
O’Donnell, from Falmouth, has been a painter, sculptor, and art educator since the 1980s. She and Lethem met when she was one of his students at USM, and they discovered they shared similar outlooks on life and art, including a passion for social issues and how art can contribute to dialog about them. She, like Lethem, also works in both painting and sculpture. O’Donnell’s work has been in several solo and group exhibitions in Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts.
Even though both artists have had any number of shows before, this one at the Green Lion is the first two-person show of their work together. This show highlights the common resonances in their work and their creative relationship, which began as student and teacher, but over three decades has also become a family friendship and ongoing artistic dialog.
Both artists’ work has evolved considerably over their careers, and continues to do so as both are active and prolific. Their show at the Green Lion is a snapshot of what they are working on currently, and includes both two- and three-dimensional work. Paintings from Lethem’s recent “Nebraska Triangle” series are included, along with a number of assemblages he has been working on. O’Donnell’s sculpture features in the show as well, along with oil and encaustic paintings.
Both O’Donnell and Lethem delve deeply into personal sources of intuitive and subconscious imagery that is often abstract, but still weaves in and out of the everyday world of recognizable objects while it tugs at complex emotional and even spiritual roots.
There will be a talk with both artists at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 28 at the gallery.