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Gregson, Bowring offer joint abstract painting exhibition at Bridgewater College

Crystal Graham
Chris Gregson abstract painting
The abstract painting, by Chris Gregson, is titled “Le Marais 005.” Submitted by Bridgewater College.

Together, an exhibition of abstract paintings by Chris Gregson and Sally Bowring, is on display through Sept. 27 in the Beverly Perdue Art Gallery located on the first floor of the John Kenny Forrer Learning Commons at Bridgewater College.

Together features the latest work by these two artists who have had an ongoing artistic discourse over the past 30 years.

The art exhibition will have an opening reception in the gallery from 5-7 p.m. on Monday, with an artists’ talk at 5:30 p.m.

The exhibition, opening reception and artists’ talk are free and open to the public.

Their abstract paintings share a focus on the artists’ internal experiences, channeling the familiar and memory filtered through their tactile formalist practices of a dynamic use of color and form.

Many of the works were created by the artists after recent residencies at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris in the winter of 2023.

Accompanying the exhibition is a selection of early paintings by the artists that highlight their intersecting visions over time.

The gallery is open from 7:30 a.m. to midnight Monday through Thursday; 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday; 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday; and noon to midnight on Sunday.

Sally Bowring

Bowring’s current paintings culminate lifelong investigations in abstraction that include the structure of gardens, the complexity of patterns and the brilliance of colors. Each work is a painting within a painting that asks the viewer to slow down and look carefully. Crafted formally, intuitively and at times with contradictions and absurdity, Bowring’s work incorporates geometric and natural forms.

Bowring lives in Richmond where she teaches at the University of Richmond and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Studio School. She previously held teaching and administrative positions at Virginia Commonwealth University in the painting and printmaking department and served as a Public Art Commissioner for Richmond. She holds an associate’s degree from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, a bachelor’s degree from Goddard College in Vermont and a master of fine arts from VCU.

Chris Gregson

Gregson’s central painting issues are the expressiveness of the shape, the exploration of pictorial and sculptural abstraction, and the relationship between his work and the viewer. Geometric forms are his main pictorial element. He blurs the boundaries between non-objective and abstracted images from nature. Using a language of simple forms on multiple canvases presented in series is meant to convey that nothing is singular, but all exists in a complex web of relationships.

Gregson studied at the New York Studio and Forum of Stage Design and worked as a stage artist at the Metropolitan Opera and other theaters throughout New York City. He holds a B.F.A. in theatre production from the University of Arizona. Now based out of Fredericksburg, his work has been exhibited in the U.S. and Europe and appears in many distinguished corporate and private collections including the U.S. Embassy in Guinea. Gregson founded the Richmond Curatorial Project and co-founded the Constructs Group, an abstract painting collective.

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.