"The current exhibition (through July 4) at Tory Folliard presents work by a teacher and his one-time pupil, both painters based in Bloomington, Illinois, and while the bolder, bigger works of Harold Gregor may initially dominate over those of his former student Mark Forth, and while Gregor is more prominent in the art world, it was Forth’s work that ultimately had a stronger impact on me. You may feel differently.
Forth’s are Midwestern genre paintings, mostly oil on canvas, all featuring soft, luminescent surreal lighting, emanating from a window (in his interior settings) or a street lamp or lights (in his exterior settings). Some evoke a still, summer night, in a small town (Bloomington perhaps?), with well manicured yards and neat little homes, but not fancy, it could be Bay View. Forth describes his paintings as a “realm of stillness and shadow.” The subjects are achingly human, mired in quotidian details, but often with a Surrealist twist.
Gregor’s current works are landscapes, brilliantly colorful, panoramic and sweeping. Titles such as “Blue Magnified Tangledscape #487” combine elements of more conventional landscape, but often morph into surprising shapes filled with bold colors and patterns, often with a heavy outline which flattens out the shapes and leans toward abstraction. From a distance many of the works have a tapestry or quilt-like effect. “Illinois Flatscape # 106” is a dramatic, birds-eye view of farm fields and roads as if seen from a low flying plane."
Excerpt copied from Urban Milwaukee, full article by Rose Balistreri