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Complementary by Contrast at Touchstones

Joining Worlds Mixed Media Collage on board, 2010, Natasha Smith. Photo credit: Natasha Smith

Rachel Yoder and Natasha Smith exhibition

Touchstones Nelson

Opening: Nov. 19, 7-9 p.m.


Touchstones has divided their large Gallery A space between two local artists: Natasha Smith and Rachel Yoder. 

The artists are friends and are at similar points in their art careers, but the two exhibits could not be more different in concept, style and technique. 

One artist creates purely abstract paintings that investigate colour relationships and structure in a controlled way, while the other artist creates expressively, using symbols and building tactile surfaces on alternative supports. 

“We are excited to be sharing the gallery space and to be teaming up for our artist talk,” said Smith.

“Although, visually, our work is very different, Rachel and I share the same passion for creating and communicating visually and look forward to sharing the last part of our creative process together.”

A common technique that they both incorporate in their work is layering, one creating a consistent clean even surface while the other creates heavily textured surfaces using various materials.

Yoder, in creating her new body of paintings Consanguinity, placed severe restrictions on herself. Each painting is a 24” x 24” panel with two colours placed side by side with an overlapping band. 

Her carpentry experience, using small pieces of material to create structure, and preoccupation with colour combine in the carefully limited format to explore the nature and mutability of colour perception.  

Stripped of all but colour and line, the vibrant abstract panels are displayed to create dynamic structures that allow people to observe shifting relationships and expand visual and intellectual perception of colour.

Smith’s work explores archetypal mark-making in a visual dialogue between mother and child. The exhibition features a series of runes or hieroglyphs (inspired by the drawings of her son, Dylan), which form a visual language between mother and child that the artist calls Joining Worlds.  

By collaging and building layers of paint, and acrylic medium on seven unusual doors, a visual story is created, with each door being opened by the imagination of the viewer.

Join the artists for their opening Nov. 19 from 7-9 p.m. and their talk on Nov. 30.