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Distillations of spirit and vision

"Elegantly Simple, Deceptively Simple" represents individual statements made by eight Northwest artists who share a common sensibility for the distillation of images to express their ideas and attitudes.

The sculpture and paintings assembled for the exhibit share a minimalist or reductivist quality and include artwork by Anne Appleby, Victoria Haven, Mary Henry, Patsy Krebs, Peter Millet, Matt Sellars, Richard Wilson and Robert Yoder. All of these artists are based in the Northwest.

"Elegantly Simple, Deceptively Simple" will be displayed through Dec. 8 at the Schneider Museum of Art on the Southern Oregon University campus, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland.

Among the artwork, Appleby's paintings may be the best examples of a style that is considered minimalist. Her paintings are monochromatic fields of deep, luminous colors on canvas panels. Appleby characterizes her paintings as landscapes inspired by nature.

Appleby's artwork is exhibited around the country and is held in the permanent collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Berkeley Museum of Art and the San Jose Museum of Art.

Millett creates geometrically simple wood and metal sculpture that, while rooted in modernism, moves away from the earlier approach to more sacred forms, such as the octagon, the cross, the yoni and mandalas. The result is sculpture that holds a contemplative authority. Millett's pedestal and wall sculptures have been selected for solo exhibitions held throughout the western United States.

Sellars represents yet another point of view. While his work retains strong connections to the landscapes or architecture that inform his images, he reduces those sources into freer versions of themselves and includes only the lines that give his artwork structure and grace. Sellars is the youngest of the group showing art in the Schneider exhibit. He has been showing his work in Washington State since 1991.

The other artists included in the exhibit, Henry, Haven, Krebs, Wilson and Yoder, all present images that are geometric or abstract.

The Schneider Museum of Art is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Admission is a suggested $3 donation. See www.sou.edu/sma or call 552-6245.

'Golden Rose (above),' oil and wax on panels by Anne Appleby, is inspired by the colors of nature.