Two new exhibitions at the Tory Folliard Gallery (233 N. Milwaukee St.) each introduce the everyday into their art. Cathy Martin comes to her craft from an earthy angle, which steered clear of the contemporary artist’s traditional MFA-lined path. She is an artist whose day job puts food on her table by putting food on other people’s tables. Indeed, her oil paintings on display in the exhibit “This & That” reveal a sensitivity to nature no doubt nurtured by her years as a Wisconsin farmer. Although she is self-taught, the technical execution of her work indicates a rare talent.
Mark Mulhern’s “New Work” uncovers a different domain of reality by means of a different technical approach. Photographic accuracy is here exchanged for figurativeness and atmosphere, which evoke a more primal, immediate stratum of experience. From dog walkers, pigeons amongst passing crowds and the backs of people’s heads, the subject matter also belongs to the everyday world.
The exhibitions open with an artists reception on Friday, Sept. 12 from 5-7:30 p.m. You have until Oct. 11 to make these images part of your everyday.