Painters Judy Klich & David Swanagin inspired by natural world

February 27th, 2011 by Staff Report in Life Entertainment

Opening Tuesday at the River Gallery is an exhibition titled "Journey." The featured artists, both from Tennessee, are Judy Klich and David Swanagin.

Klich creates abstract paintings using the medium of encaustic. She says she likes encaustic because the mixture of beeswax, damar resin, oil paint and heat is naturally spontaneous and gives her immediate satisfaction. Building up layers and layers of texture with encaustic helps Klich find a connection to her subject -- nature.

"I use color and abstraction to evoke a strong emotional response," she said in her artist's statement.

Finding a spiritual relationship to the natural world and capturing Earth's beauty serve as inspiration for her paintings.

Swanagin uses oils to paint landscapes and interiors that elicit a mood. His style ranges from representational to impressionistic.

"Most important to me, and really the basis of my work, is strong shadow and light," he said. "I think it makes a scene much more powerful."

Swanagin added he hopes viewers will experience an emotional resonance with his paintings.

A reception for "Journey" will be held Friday from 6:30 to 8 p.m. (snow date: Saturday, 2-4 p.m.). Both artists will be present to discuss their work.

The show continues through March 31.

River Gallery, corner of Bluff View and High streets, is open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 1-5 p.m. Sunday and by appointment. Call 265-5033.