Mark Sabaliauskas, "Zenith," 2019, oil and chalk on paper, 30 x 40 in.
Mark Sabaliauskas, “Zenith,” 2019, oil and chalk on paper, 30 x 40 in.

Although the many “isms” that arose with the birth of non-representational art little more than a century ago have passed, the urge to create without specific reference to that which we see remains an impulse shared by many artists.

The upcoming exhibition “Spontaneity: 10 Abstract Painters from Nebraska, opening February 28 at Gallery 1516, focuses on the continued resonance of abstraction, and in particular the drive for the personal and gestural nature associated with abstract expressionism.

Spontaneity features the work of contemporary artists James Bockelman, Diane Lounsberry-Williams, Ann Pape, Larry Roots, Mark Sabaliauskas, Nancy Teague, JK Thorsen, and Beverly Todd, as well as the late Dan Howard and Jerry Jacoby. This exhibition brings together artists who share what the organizers describe as “the qualities of spontaneous expression, vibrant color, and unique use of line and form.”

Collectively, they illustrate the virtual playground the canvas can become when working freely with the purely formal aspects of art.

Spontaneity: 10 Abstract Painters from Nebraska opens Friday, February 28 at Gallery 1516 and runs through May 17. The gallery is located at 1516 Leavenworth Street and is open Friday—Sunday from 11am to 5pm; admission is free. For more details, go to gallery

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