Lots happening in the galleries this First Thursday and the weather forecast calls for a balmy evening to be out and about.

Paul Havas, Red Alder, 2006/07, oil on canvas, 63 x 73 in. Courtesy Woodside/Braseth Gallery.

A Tribute to Paul Havas (1940–2012)
Thru June 1, Woodside/Braseth
The much-admired painter Paul Havas died last year and Woodside/Braseth Gallery has mounted a tribute to him. Nobody caught the milky-soft quality of light in the Skagit Valley better than Havas, an old-school artist who kept painting with oils and packing his easel out into the fields throughout his career. The geometry of the built environment attracted him as well, and Havas had an eye for elegant compositions of hulking old barns and storage buildings as well as sleek city skylines. “The painting process is full of beckoning choices,” Havas maintained. “They appear in the incidental stains and marks of the brush and are ever at play with and redefine the objective.”

 

Alfredo Arreguin, La Cancion del Pez (Song of the fish), 2013, oil on canvas. Courtesy Linda Hodges Gallery.

Alfredo Arreguin
May 2–June 1, Linda Hodges Gallery
Esteemed Mexican-American artist Alfredo Arreguin shows the wildly patterned, jam-packed compositions of fish, birds, animals, waves, constellations, you name it, that have won him high honors in the U.S. and in his hometown of Morelia, Michoacan. Arreguin’s work is included in the Smithsonian’s Museum of American Art and in 2008 he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the University of California, Riverside. Arrequin has lived in Seattle since 1958.

 

Kathryn Altus and Joel Brock
May 2–June 3, Lisa Harris Gallery
Landscapes are on display at Lisa Harris Gallery, too, with new work from Kathryn Altus’s series Stream to Sea, which expresses and gently abstracts the artist’s deep affinity for the environment she grew up in. Water is a constant in the paintings as it is in the Northwest. Also on display is a group of unexpected still lifes by Joel Brock, focusing attention on discarded objects from cigarettes and razor blades to the vulnerable-looking body of a fallen bird.

Doug Jeck, Nimbus (detail), 2013. Courtesy Traver Gallery.

Doug Jeck and Ginny Ruffner
May 2–June 2, Traver Gallery
Two powerhouses of the Seattle art world join forces at Traver Gallery this month: Ceramist Doug Jeck, known for the haunting realism of his figurative clay sculptures and Ginny Ruffner, who continues her Aesthetic Engineering exploration through drawings, glass and bronze sculptures. Ruffner fashions opulent, sexy compositions of flowers, fruit and figures, spiked, in this series, with references to genetic engineering.

Coming soon...

Stay tuned for the opening of James Harris Gallery in its new home on May 8. Harris will re-open in a storefront at 604 Second Avenue (the former Howard House) with a show of new landscape photographs by Bing Wright and sculptures by Rachelle Rojany.