Alex Brewer, Dixie Purvis, Brett Smith at Sandler Hudson

Mark Making in Black and White is about the act of painting, specifically mark making in a restrictive palette.

Alex Brewer, Dixie Purvis, and Brett Smith share the act of mark making in their work. This gestural application is used dramatically and differently by each of these three artists.

Alex Brewer was born and raised in Atlanta, GA. Brewer, may be most noted by his very visible works of graffiti under the moniker “HENSE.” HENSE is a visual artist who has been applying paint to surfaces for almost two decades. He creates free-formed paintings using a combination of abstract lines and shapes to produce compositions. His works have been described as a fluid, linear explosion of pastels.

He began his career by painting walls and writing graffiti in and around Atlanta Georgia in the early 90’s. By 1999 his work could be seen almost everywhere throughout the city, achieving what is known as an “all city status.” He has traveled and painted in eleven cities in the United States and also produced exterior works abroad in Spain, France, Japan, Taiwan and Mexico. He has continued to move forward with his work on the urban landscape while also adopting new techniques and translating them to more permanent surfaces. He began applying what he had learned through working in the street to mediums of painting, printmaking, and public art installations. This work has been featured in numerous publications such as Juxtapoz Magazine, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Mass Appeal Magazine. His work has also been exhibited in galleries locally and internationally in Tokyo, Taipei and Barcelona. Most recently, he has been commissioned to create public murals for The Atlanta BeltLine; which is among the largest urban redevelopment projects currently underway in the United States.

Dixie Purvis resides and paints in Atlanta, GA. These drawn paintings and painted drawings are a relational, emotional interpretation of personal history. The work is personal but not exclusive. Shapes move in from the edges or out from the center but the line and shape always break the margins creating a sense of a larger experience. Overlapping shapes, shapes that push against each other, and shapes that merge and emerge remind the viewer of the complexity and influence of personal relationships. Drawn, scraped, scratched and painted, the line leads the viewer. The line may be subtle, embedded or hidden, reflecting a distant memory. The line is more often active, bold and physical. The line…. fractured, intersecting, and spontaneous echoes time, movement and the accidental nature of the human experience. The paintings invite the viewer to be lead by the force of the line as it moves through each piece acknowledging that much of our own history is defined by relationships and formed by events and experiences beyond our control.

Brett Smith was born in Durban, South Africa and now lives and works in Atlanta, GA. Smith is a self-taught artist. “My goal as an artist is to distill that which has been observed into a simple mark or gesture so that each dot and each line will possess a life of its own. I tend to filter the botanical world through his conscious and sub-conscious mind, meditating on the various forms and images, finally drafting a new reality through a process of automatic drawing and painting. Experimentation, invention and accident play a pivotal role in my quest to achieve visual poetry. 

As a child I remember being fascinated by the forms and shapes of trees, flowers and leaves, being amazed by the endless combinations of form and texture. Therefore it is not a surprise that these are the same images and themes that move through my paintings and drawings now. By observing the constant change as things grow, flourish and finally decay, I find that I am able to examine that fine line between beauty and destruction.”

Through May 14.

An artist talk with Alex Brewer will take place on April 30.

Sandler Hudson Gallery
1009-A Marietta St., NW
Atlanta, GA 30318

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