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4 Art Guys

Hosted by Akers, Howitt, Markoff and Quest
Tuesday, May 1, 2012 - 11:00am - Wednesday, May 30, 2012 - 5:00pm
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Contact Info

Lori Elliott-Bartle
(402) 740-2367

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Artists' Cooperative Gallery
405 S. 11th Street
Omaha, NE 68102
Price: It's Free (sweet!)

Mixed media artist Sean Akers, woodturner Doyle Howitt, painter Richard Markoff and ceramics artist Tom Quest show new work May 1-30, 2012, in “4 Art Guys.” They will host an opening reception 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday, May 4 as part of First Friday in the Old Market, where many area establishments will celebrate creativity. Some locations will feature live music, including saxophonist Jerry Jacoby at the Co-op. Ollie the Trolley will offer free rides around the neighborhood and free parking will be available at Nebraska at the Market, 13th and Leavenworth streets. Find more information at

Sean Akers, mixed media artist, creates whimsical assemblages of carved wood forms painted and embellished with wires and other materials. Many of his pieces evoke the intricacies of quilts. His new series balances extremes. “Several pieces are extremely structured and detailed where I use a wide variety of techniques,” Akers says. “Other pieces are the opposite — unstructured almost to the point of chaos. Of course, there are also a few pieces that land somewhere in the middle — somewhat organized and intricate with part of it more unbalanced and disordered.”

Doyle Howitt creates sensuous pieces that emphasize the natural grain, texture and colors in exotic and domestic woods. He often incorporates the aberrations that occur in burls, rounded knotty growths, or spalting, black irregular lines created by fungus growth. Howitt’s pieces range from classic to whimsical shapes.

Painter Rich Markoff has created a new series of paintings in which he explores new methods and tools. He says he aims to “engage the imagination and to express myself. In this series, I’ve used gravity as the tool to create large color fields on canvas hoping to invoke emotions for the viewer,” he adds. “Upon studying a painting, one can visualize different conclusions.”

Ceramics artist Tom Quest constructs pieces with slabs of clay that he embellishes with rich textures. New works include collaborations with other artists and new shapes that lend to single-focus design elements. “I’ve also incorporated ‘continued images’ between pieces,” Quest says, “which adds a new connection when viewers see the work. Although the colors in the pieces are the same, I modified the glaze chemistry to enhance the playfulness between layers.” In addition to vessels and trays, Quest creates wall-hung tiles that allow design options on a larger field.

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