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Outside In and Inside Out-Soul Expressions by Toni Carlton and Michael Grady at Carlton Gallery

July 30, 2013. The featured exhibition at Carlton Gallery, “Outside In and Inside Out – Soul Expressions” is ongoing through August 21.  The exhibition space changes monthly with a variation of artworks from abstract, soul expressions to landscapes, cityscapes, horses, figurative, and even an invitational photography exhibit.

Toni Carlton - Healing - White Buffalo Returns - 40x70The current exhibition, “Outside In and Inside Out – Soul Expressions” by Toni Carlton and Michael Grady, exemplifies their collaborative efforts of mixed media work by Carlton and acrylic paintings with Chinese ink by Grady. They share a common interest in Asian art and philosophy, along with a connection to art that connects creativity, wellness and spirituality. Their exhibition refers to an interest in weaving elements which connect the outer worlds of culture and nature to the inner worlds of mind, spirit and emotion.  It also explores concepts of nature, “flow” and the authentic gesture used in Asian art.

Both artists have considerable experience in the study and practice of Asian calligraphy – Carlton through studies with noted Korean American artist, Kichung Lizee, and Grady through the study of tai chi, calligraphy and landscape painting at the China National Academy of Art in Hangzhou.  He established strong connections to the art academy which continues today.  Carlton’s art incorporates expressive calligraphic text in English, Chinese and Sanskrit to create elegant flowing abstract compositions which are seen through hand woven fabric adhered to canvas with many layers of transparent paint. Grady creates paintings using subtle layers of color and dynamic calligraphic marks to evoke an indication of landscape – mountains, clouds. Each artist’s work displays an interesting area between recognizable imagery and pure abstraction. 

The “Outside In and Inside Out – Soul Expressions” exhibition’s fusion of artistic styles and techniques provides a rarely seen glimpse into art which combines Asian and American sensibilities – to explore the nature of the “heroic gesture” and its connection to light, form, language, body and energy. Carlton and Grady explore a dimension of paradox – personal and universal, figurative and abstract, poetic and concrete. They join each other in the unapologetic creation of beauty and harmony.  This “Outside In and Inside Out- Soul Expressions” exhibition allows one to see the world (and possibly one’s self) in new and exciting ways. 

Mike Grady - Reunion - 2013Toni Carlton’s calligraphic paintings have juried in the Invitational World Calligraphy Exhibitions held in Seoul, Korea; Beijing, China and Geneva, Switzerland.  Carlton was one of two American women artists whose work was chosen for the “Calligraphy Sprout to the West” exhibition in Seoul, Korea. Her calligraphy was also chosen to participate in the International Healing Arts Exhibition early this year in Naples, Italy. Carlton wrote a song “Let Us Sing” which was the background calligraphy of the two pieces titled “Healing – The White Buffalo Returns” and “Oneness” which exhibited in Naples, Italy.  Carlton says, “For over twenty years, my work has been about the connection of all people through the use of different languages, universal images that represent open hearts, as well as respecting our heritage and recognizing our oneness”.

Upcoming exhibitions at Carlton Gallery include:

Mid Summer Group Exhibition

July 27– September 24

Opening Reception July 27 2-5

Savoring Moments in Time

Kevin Beck – Egi Antonaccio

August 24-September 24

Opening Reception August 24 2-5

Sharing the Muse

Vae Hamilton, Kate Worm, Mary Dobbin

September28 October 22

Opening Reception September 28 2-5

Autumn Group Exhibition

September 28 November 22

Opening Reception September 28 2-5

Visiting Artists Exhibition

Alternative Views – Photography

DENNIS USDAN and Carole Usdan

October 26 – November 19

Opening Reception October 26 2-5

The gallery is located 10 miles south of Boone and 7 miles north of Linville on HWY 105 in the Grandfather Mountain community. Workshops in painting, mixed media, and expressive arts are held weekly by gallery artists who enjoy helping others experience profound creativity. For information on artists, exhibitions or available workshops, call (828) 963-4288 or www.carltongallery.com.