Often abstract paintings are dismissed by the casual observer as easy to execute. The work of Catherine Howe should disabuse anyone of that notion. It is clear from the marked difference in various periods of her work that Howe is a master of the brush. In her early '90s isolated portraits, Howe's technique is alarmingly personal and subtly confrontational. Her new collection, I am Nature, posits the floral still-life in almost violent abstract strokes, a snapshot of a centerpiece explosion. As beautiful as they are provocative, Howe's work maintains the delicate intimacy of her beginnings. Catherine Howe: I am Nature opens with a free reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, January 10, at the Philip Slein Gallery (4735 McPherson Avenue; 314-361-2617 or www.philipsleingallery.com). The show remains up through Saturday, February 15, and the gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday.
Tuesdays-Saturdays. Starts: Jan. 10. Continues through Feb. 15, 2014

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