Step Into the Back Room with Lush Newton and David White
Humboldt State University First Street Gallery is pleased to present "Step Into the Back Room, with Lush Newton and David White", on exhibit from February 1st through March 6th 2011. This show will feature an installation utilizing recycled materials and found objects that will evolve over the course of the exhibition, blending the playful attitudes of these two well-known artists from California’s North Coast. Influenced by Outsider Art and theater, the installation combines mythical creatures and imaginary landscapes to create a large room-sized tableau invoking the themes of memory, home, and the journey through life.
Newton and White share a talent for shaping the world around them with simple materials, such as cardboard and glue, tape and paper, altering the fabric of reality to bring wonder and delight to everyday living. Starting with only a broad idea, Newton and White approach their work with openness to discovery, allowing the actual gallery space and the power of place at First Street to guide their creative actions. Though they have different fabrication techniques—White has a background in construction and measures out his structures, while Newton has a spontaneous and intuitive technique and draws her forms free-hand before cutting them out—they both enjoy reclaiming discarded materials and making art that yields a multi-sensory experience. Starting on opposite sides of the gallery, the two artists are working, sculpting toward each and will join their two worlds at the center of the back room.
Newton grew up in the Ozarks, where her mother and grandparents influenced her interest in art. After graduating with a BFA in Illustration and Design from Kansas City Art Institute, Missouri, Newton moved to Los Angeles and worked for the Walt Disney Company for some time. Realizing that she missed nature and a slower pace of living, Newton moved to Humboldt County, California where she has since found a supportive arts community. Some of the forms in Step Into the Back Room are inspired by the memory of Newton’s late dog, Dave, along with the concept of looking for shelter and being on the road.
White earned a graduate degree in Art from Humboldt State University (HSU) in the late 1980’s. At the time he constructed a colorful, biomorphic sculptural installation, modifying a hallway in the Art Department at HSU. His installation was meant to only stay up for 6 months, yet remains intact to this day. This installation is popular among HSU students and faculty and is one of the highlights during campus tours of the university. Shortly after finishing his graduate degree, White emigrated to Japan where he taught Art and English and worked on numerous sculptural projects, museum exhibitions and commissions. In 2004, White retuned to the United States, his art deeply influenced by his Asian experience, and has since made his home in Northern California.
Step Into the Back Room is an evolving exhibition as the artists will make additions and changes during the course of the show. Gallery visitors are encouraged to visit the installation multiple times throughout the exhibition as they will have opportunities to interact with the artists and observe how the exhibition will grow, shift and evolve during its month-long existence. An opening reception for the artists will be held at HSU First Street Gallery on Saturday, February 5, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. The exhibition will run from February 1 – March 6, 2011. The gallery is open Tuesday through Sunday noon to 5:00 p.m. and is located at 422 First Street, Eureka, California. Admission is free and those planning group tours are encouraged to call ahead at 707-443-6363. To learn more, and to track the changes in the exhibition, visit www.humboldt.edu/first or link to our Facebook page by clicking on the Facebook button in the menu on the left.