Perspectives Gallery (835 G St.) has an exhibition of works by two emerging San Diego artists, Jacquelynn Kresman and Bill Mosley, both of whom use oil on canvas to create representational images of considerable beauty and authority.
Kresman is more nearly the photorealist purist of the two in combining linear crispness with fidelity to color, and generally eschewing surface texture and loose brushwork. Nevertheless, her paintings of figures on the beach possess the kind of visual poetry that we associate with such Northern California photorealist masters as Robert Bechtle and Paul Staiger. Kresman is not their equal but she shows much promise.
Although her subjects are commonplace, she creates uncommon moods through her mastery of light and detail.
In "Hey Dude!" Kresman has created a bravura, painterly, graffiti-covered beach wall along with masterful illusions of hair and water on human skin. In "Street Dancers," possibly her finest painting in the exhibition (because through the cropping of a leaping figure and the use of shadows she is suggestive rather than explicit) she creates another wall covered with graffiti, combining photorealism with painterly abstraction.
Kresman, a painter of considerable intelligence, falls into cuteness with such works as "Dog Beach Pals" and "Beach Chairs."
Mosley appears to use photographs more generally as notation, not as models. His approach is more painterly and less true to what we agree upon as visible reality. Like Kresman, he also uses the commonplace as his source and is able to convey its poetry with authority. "Afternoon on India" and "Evening" demonstrate his mastery of moods. "Sunday Afternoon" juxtaposes the spareness of downtown with the angularity of its architecture and the desert of its parking lots with the deliciousness of the images and colors reflected in its glass facades.
On the other hand, Mosley is also capable of creating weak, contrived, shaped paintings such as "Imperial to Home" and "Empire."
Both artists would have been helped by some editing. Nevertheless, their show merits careful viewing. It continues through July 31.
The La Jolla Athenaeum (1008 Wall St.) is offering its annual exhibition of works by members. It's the usual mix for such shows, ranging from amateurish to more than competent. Some works rely on fancy frames as compensation for an absence of other interest; others appear in that "horror" of the framer's art, non-reflective glass, which kills whatever life a work of art might possess. But there are works that are beautiful and evocative, and others of considerable charm to be sought out.
A specific few of some interest are Tanya Holm-Hansen's Sumi ink, "My Bamboo"; Kathleen Briggs' watercolor landscape, "Torrey Pines and Ardath '53"; Jeanne Zvetina's charcoal portrait, "La Chunga," and Melody Carlton's pastel study of motion, "Bu Jumping."
The exhibition continues through July 26.
Gallery Eight in La Jolla (7464 Girard Ave.) has a small exhibition featuring the works of six New Zealand potters, Steve Fullmer, Peter Gibbs, Rick Rudd, John Crawford, Royce McGlashen and Cecilia Parkinson.
If there is a peculiarly New Zealandish quality about their works, it is elusive. The universality of modern art seems pervasive in every area occupied by people of Western European heritage.
All the works are small, and all are beautiful.
The exhibition continues through July 19.
Gustaf Anders, one of La Jolla's most respected restaurants, continues to offer fine contemporary art along with its fine food.
The current two-person show, "Painting Without Canvas," features the works of San Diegan Katherine Hart and Santa Barbaran Randolph Sommer. Guest curator Reesey Shaw's purpose is to show that art for walls may be made of materials other than paint.
Hart uses found materials to create assemblages that are tours de force of composition. Using bits and pieces of wood, old machinery parts and other objects of mysterious origin, she constructs wall reliefs characterized by strong forms and subtle, mostly earth, colors.
She enjoys taking risks--with respect to balance especially--and is wildly imaginative in her use of materials, such as the fingers from rubber gloves in "Reindeer Fence."
Hart's earlier, small white works in the middle dining room lack the authority of the works exhibited elsewhere in the restaurant.
Sommer shows two small assemblages of detritus in the tradition of Los Angeles master George Herms and three large pastel drawings of abstract surreal forms in seductive, modulated, deep fields.
Diners at Gustaf Anders will be able to enjoy these works through Labor Day.