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Eclectic artworks grace Brooksville City Hall

First Mark by Richard Duncan is on display at the Brooksville City Hall Art Gallery as part of the fall exhibit.

First Mark by Richard Duncan is on display at the Brooksville City Hall Art Gallery as part of the fall exhibit.

BROOKSVILLE — Colors muted by water, bold in oils, illumination by sun and moonlight, moments caught in a camera's blink, and artisan woodworks. All are embodied in an eclectic fall art exhibit by Hernando artists at the Brooksville City Hall Art Gallery.

Richard Duncan's watercolor landscapes are sublime, muted hues with a harder-edged picture focus in every work. The 69-year-old said he has been painting "forever."

"Capture a likeness or recall a place," he said. "The challenge is how the artist pulls off an arrangement of line, mass and space."

Unusual are Julie Komenda's batiks on handmade paper. Batik, a technique that employs layer after layer of waxes, scraped away one at a time to allow in each individual color, is usually applied to textiles. Her pastel colors flow. Her exhibit includes at least three works featuring corn, a series recognizing last spring's flooding of cornfields in Iowa.

Those works give way to the bold and flaming colors of oil-on-canvas works by David Rivera, a native of Puerto Rico. Rivera's style is similar to the Florida Highwaymen, said city art coordinator Rhonda Hancock. "He's proud of his heritage," Hancock said of the artist whose works have been hung in the state Capitol.

Rivera lays on paint with a palette knife, so textured that the result is three-dimensional. Particularly captivating is his Mangrove Sunset, a large canvas. It is dominated by an orange and gold background, shading into a purple twilight, the mangroves cast darkly.

Paul O. Shaskan also employs vivid colors in painting styles that range from a Grandma Moses motif to Georgia O'Keeffe. He aims to employ color to evoke emotion, often with a simple but striking focus — carmine is one of his favorite colors in this exhibit — on a pale background landscape.

Mary B. Davis creates pleasing landscapes in acrylics.

Joan Swetland has offered a display of her Ukrainian-painted eggs, with intricate detail, meaningful symbols to the region and religion, and much gilding.

Dr. Adel Eldin has loaned the gallery pieces of Islamic art from his collection.

The Spring Hill Camera Club has hung works in rotation. Bruce Hampson's waterfowl photos make a viewer wonder how long he had to sit to get the shot. Mike Eckstein's sun rays through storm clouds is as wondrous as the weather.

Ray VanHeck's Fountain in the Park looks as if frozen in ice. Vic Symond's close-up portraits reveal personalities of which a viewer wants to ask questions.

Wayne Holder, a master craftsman of national acclaim, has on display his replicas in varied-colored woods: antique cars, a stagecoach, farm tractors, a road grader — "big boys' toys."

"They're all moveable," Hancock said.

Hanging in the stairwell is a display of artisan quilts by the Hernando Quilters, whose challenge for this exhibit was black and white with one color accent of not more than 10 percent. A particularly grabbing quilt has black cats on a white background. Its color: golden eyes.

For the Suncoast Ship Model Society of Spring Hill, Vic Lehner has contributed the centerpiece, a replica of the tall sailing ship Cutty Sark, built in 1869. The scale model is 27 inches high with a beam of 15 inches, the deck of maple, the hull coppered with more than 2,000 individual plates.

Off in an alcove on the second floor is a small collection of crayon drawings by Vincent Yurich, a resident of Tangerine Cove. He's a constant visitor to all of the art exhibits, Hancock said. When he said he liked to draw, Hancock invited him to participate. "That's part of being a public gallery," she said.

Beth Gray can be reached at graybethn@

>>If you go

Brooksville City Hall Art Gallery

The fall exhibit at the Brooksville City Hall Art Gallery continues through Nov. 7. Gallery hours coincide with City Hall hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. The Hernando County Fine Arts Council will have a free public reception for the artists from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday. Many of the works on exhibit are for sale by direct contact with the artists.

Eclectic artworks grace Brooksville City Hall 10/12/08 [Last modified: Sunday, October 12, 2008 8:14pm]
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