Tom Drymon Selects at Studio Second Floor
I was at the grand opening last Friday night of a new episodic artspace in town called “Tom Drymon Selects”. Not content with being an artist and graphic designer, my friend Tom has become a gallerist of a very particular and individual kind; every few months he will be showing a small group of artists whose work is affordable, accessible, and appeals to Tom’s personal sensibility. The aim is to introduce art collecting to a broader (i.e. less old and less rich) audience, the venue is the second floor of Studio Gallery on R Street in Dupont Circle and it is a lovely and intimate way to show art.
Each show will be centered on a central organizing premise of some kind and will feature a new selection of artists. This month’s show is called “Only what you can carry with you” and I love that title with its connotations applying both to the artist and to the collector. Allowing for the generally tenuous and elastic nature of most art themes, the idea common to much of the work that most attracted me is the persistence and centrality of childhood memory and perception to the way each of us experiences life ever after – for good or ill.
The four artists Tom chose for his inaugural show are James Cassell, Peter Harper, Joren Lindholm and Zade Ramsey. For me, the standout works are Zade Ramsey’s Memory Boxes. After graduating with a BFA, Ramsey spent many years as manager of digital printing production for a major company and is now an interior designer who crafts custom fabric and upholstery work. His attention to detail and mastery of craft elevates his boxes of Southern Gothic memories to an exceptional level. Peter Harper’s exuberantly colored large paintings also succeed in conjuring up a kind of memory map of childhood places
Of course I did not fail to mention to Tom that this show conspicuously lacks artists of the female variety and am happy to note that the next show of Drymon selections will feature figurative work by women artists. So, thanks for doing this, Tom, and good luck in the new venture. It’s a good thing for all of us to show more art and engage more people.
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