This San Francisco Exhibit Proves That Unity Is Everything, Especially In Art


Using fluid paint strokes, Kanna Aoki captures the magical light of Bay Area scenes in her work. Rab Terry, who has a science background, brings a spirit of exploration to his abstract Venetian plaster paintings (below), concocting custom pigments, layering color, and then sanding and burnishing to reveal what lies beneath. The artists discussed their joint show at Studio Gallery, owned by Terry and his wife, Ferris, through October 12.

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What’s currently inspiring your work? KA: Everyone’s been sheltered in place and not taking vacations, so I’ve been going through old slides from trips that I photographed to see if there’s anything I can do paintings from, maybe Italy or France. I’ll also have paintings of California. We live in an amazing place. RT: I’ve been using serenity as inspiration. A lot of my pieces use hues of the sea or watercolors. I’m also working with some different materials. I want some continuity of look and feel to the work in the show rather than just putting up the greatest hits.

Why do you make a great pairing? RT: Kanna’s a representational painter, but she’s not averse to experimentation. There are certain people whose work goes well with mine, but maybe it’s static. Kanna’s process is more dynamic. KA: Both of our work has a lot of light, color and airiness. It’s nice to have the realism on one side and the purely abstract on the other. It leaves space to bounce back and forth.