Chattanooga Now River Gallery opens 2019 with reception honoring trio of artists

Chattanooga Now River Gallery opens 2019 with reception honoring trio of artists

January 2nd, 2019 by Staff Report in Chattanooga Now - Art

Floral ceramic bowl by Mari Kuroda (Photo from

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Glass perfume bottle by Loy Allen accented with a dragonfly. (Photo from

Glass perfume bottle by Loy Allen accented with...

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

River Gallery is opening 2019 with a two-month exhibit by a trio of artists.

Loy Allen, Mari Kuroda and Lynn Whipple are the featured artists for January and February at the gallery, 400 E. Second St. They will be honored with an opening reception on Friday, Jan. 4, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in the gallery.

Allen is a South Dakota native who returned to the Black Hills after studying design at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. After learning basic lampworking in South Dakota, she studied advanced glass techniques at the Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina and at The Studio at the Corning Museum of Glass in New York. She has been self-employed as a flameworker since 1979.

Allen says she draws inspiration "from the natural world, the hills and plains of Dakota. Stylistically, I am inspired by the art of the Art Nouveau age. My natural forms are meant to be expressive without being strictly realistic."

Potter Mari Kuroda's ceramics depict a blend of Japanese and American cultures.

Born in rural Japan, where her father taught English and ikebana (flower arranging), she studied the tea ceremony and came to appreciate the beauty of simplicity.

She says that through her education and life in this country, she has learned to explore her feelings and express emotions in ways that are very un-Japanese.

"My highly emotional sculptures reflect my American side. In making sculpture, my purpose is to find serenity. I get satisfaction from each piece I create and I hope to share that with others."

A mixed-media artist, Whipple takes advantage of many types of the art form. She is accomplished in everything from collage to painting and drawing, sewing and found objects.

"I am a mixed-media artist in every sense of the word. I draw, paint, collage, sew, dip things in wax, journal and use found objects in assemblages. I relish the search for interesting items and have always been fascinated by history, old books, lost letters, worn fabrics, family photographs, wooden boxes and odd pieces of memorabilia," she says.

"My process is to surround myself with all these found items and play. My work may be playful or serious, simple or complex, large or small."

For more information about these artists or River Gallery: 1-800-374-2923.