A fusion of art and nature

Artwork and paintings by Dave and Boni Deal will be shown at the Second Story Gallery

Exhibit of pottery and paintings opens during an artist's reception on Friday, from 5 to 8 p.m., and runs through March 28, at the Second Story Gallery at the Camas Public Library, 625 N.E. Fourth Ave.

The artwork will be available to purchase.

For more information about the gallery, visit www.secondstorygallery.org.

Exhibit of pottery and paintings opens during an artist’s reception on Friday, from 5 to 8 p.m., and runs through March 28, at the Second Story Gallery at the Camas Public Library, 625 N.E. Fourth Ave.

The artwork will be available to purchase.

For more information about the gallery, visit www.secondstorygallery.org.

Accomplished raku pottery artists Dave and Boni Deal have their work in private and public collections across the United States and internationally. In January, the couple was featured on an Oregon Public Broadcasting “Art Beat” program segment filmed in their Camas art studio.

But on Friday, the Deals’ collaborative work will be featured in an intimate venue that is a little closer to home. First Friday will mark the opening reception for their show at the Second Story Gallery at the Camas Public Library.

The couple’s work was first shown at the gallery years ago, prior to a library remodel and expansion project completed in 2003.

“Our first solo exhibit at the new Second Story Gallery [was] four years ago,” Boni Deal said. “It was fun and a great space to show in — great volunteers and staff people too.”

The couple have been creating raku pottery art for 40 years. Their work is recognized for its size, forms and intricate nature-themed imagery.

The 20 pieces of Raku art that are part of the exhibit will include small-leaf imprint vases as well as a large landscape mural and urns more than 3 feet high.

The colors in the pottery mimics those found in nature — rich neutral creamy tints, vibrant reds and coppers, and dark smoky tones and iridescence. Subjects of the art pieces also reflect the outdoors — a heron’s wing past a coppery moon, leaf-imprints that create graceful patterns, in addition to other themes including salmon, wildflowers and mountains.

“We try to get a feeling of the Pacific Northwest outdoors into each piece,” Boni Deal said.

The exhibit will also include a dozen acrylic paintings done in watercolor style. Themes include coffee, portraits, mother-child matters and Africa.

The unique look of raku-style pottery is created with the quick removal of the piece from a flaming 1,900 degree kiln. It is then submerged in a closed barrel of fir boughs and wood curls.

According to Dave Deal, it can be a delicate process.

“The final firing is where the piece gets its strength and rich surface coloration, or where it can break into pieces from the thermal shock,” he said.

The Deals create all of their work in their home studio located on an 160-acre tree farm northeast of Camas, where the couple has lived for the past three decades. They also teach workshops at colleges and art centers.

A triptych featuring views of Mount Hood created by the Deals was purchased for the library. The work consisting of three separate panels has been displayed on the wall behind the reference desk since the library’s re-opening in 2003.

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