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A lesson in dichotomies

The latest show at Mark Arts featuring ceramicist Brenda Lichman and painter Tim Stone is a lesson in dichotomies: heaven and hell, hot and cold, male and female, optimistic and pessimistic. Stone’s paintings feature scenes in nature and architectural exteriors often pierced by blinding crimson light. One can see the light as beautiful or apocalyptic, depending on frame of mind. The cut and jib of these paintings seems masculine and feature titles like “Sear”, “Vulcan”, and “Dying Doesn’t Make You Whole”. Stone’s work is extremely tidy, with razor-straight lines and angles, and extraordinarily painterly. He takes great risks with his chosen colors.

Brenda Lichman’s ceramic pieces are nurturing, with light minty green, misty sky-blue, and sea green glazes. The pieces are delicate and thin-walled, showing a great amount of patience, knowledge, and an extremely delicate hand. Graceful movement and peace flowers in her work, so much so that I feel her titles “Embracing II”, “Bliss”, and “Sensual & Sultry” could have been ditched altogether.

What makes me fond of this show is how well the various pieces dance together and work in harmony, despite their collision of differences.

Opposites really do attract.

In(Flux)—the art of Brenda Lichman and Tim Stone at Mark Arts through July.

Curt Clonts is a Wichita-born artist who volunteers as KMUW's art reviewer. When Curt isn’t working in his College Hill studio he is usually spending time with his wife, kids, and grandkids. He also spends the spring and summer months kayaking and camping.