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‘Surface Appeal’

At The Art Gallery

"Hydrangeas in Willow" by Martha Spak

"Hydrangeas in Willow" by Martha Spak Photo Contributed

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"Autumns' Light" by Martha Spak

— This month The Art Gallery of Potomac will present an art exhibition titled "Surface Appeal." The show will feature paintings by artists Millie Shott and Martha Spak.

Martha Spak began painting after she had her second child and turned her "quiet hobby" into a career.

She hopes her work "conveys a sense of peace and gives the viewer a chance to pause. My paintings are peaceful, elegant and livable. Color inspires me especially the beach and shore. I appreciate water scenes. My pieces are very color driven. The idea at the end is to have a tranquil setting with a pop of color in the pieces. There is something about the light that changes with the season that makes for a great painting. Every one of my paintings is about the light and its play on the subjects. A still life holds the same inspiration as a landscape for me, the way light falls across an object revealing it's form and essence."

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Artist Millie Shott with her paintings, "The Glow" (top) and "Oscar Diva."

For this show artist Millie Shott has selected paintings with more texture that have a 3-D effect. She has always liked art and is inspired by observing what is around her. She feels that with painting, "you are interpreting on your paper. Painting pushes your imagination button to work better. I like to recall what I have seen."

Shott mainly uses liquid acrylics to get a more fluid, water color effect. She describes her works as "more impressionistic than representational. It is more interpreting what you see rather than a photo image. I enjoy adding other things to the surface to achieve balance and color harmony rather than objects." A favorite technique of hers is to add an encaustic wax coat over the painting and use a hot glue gun to push the wax around. Her advice to artists is to just "let it happen."

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Artist Martha Spak with her paintings "High Tide" (left) and "Late Daylight."

Shott and Spak will be the featured artists at The Art Gallery of Potomac now through Feb. 25. Gallery hours are Wednesday-Sunday, 12-4 p.m. The gallery is located at 10107 River Road in Potomac. Phone 240-447-9417. There will be an opening reception on Jan. 21 from 3-5 p.m. An artist demonstration will be on Feb. 11 at 2 p.m.

For more information go to www.potomacartists.org. For information on school field trips call 301-765-7617.