Polar Opposite (No Pun Intended) Artists of Canada and Brazil Share Space at Canal Street Gallery

Jane Ewen and Kelyne Reis, after intersecting at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston's Glassell School, decided that showing in the same gallery might be a good idea, even though their styles -- one works in grounded acrylics while the other is all about incorporating "graffiti-simile" into her work -- couldn't be more contradictory.

Next month, the two will share space at Canal Street Gallery during an exhibition that will showcase two of Houston's top experimental musicians as well as a stop on Artcrawl 2011.

Ewen comes from Canada, where she studied at the University of Toronto and the Sheridan School of Art and Design. Before moving to Houston, Ewen developed a technique in her acrylic paintings in which she builds "washes and organic shapes with visceral lines and splashes of vibrant colors," according to the artist.

Reis, a native of Brazil, got heavy into the German art scene. (Though she resides in Houston, she remains active as a member of the artists' group Gruppe Lulu.) Germany is also where she became hip to "graffiti-simile," which basically means that she integrates street-art techniques into her acrylics.

"The energy between us was so positive," says Reis about their interactions during an advanced technique course at Glassell. "I think our paintings work well together," explains Ewen, who adds that painting helps her stay sane. "I'm so busy most of the time, but then you have to take time to meditate and re-energize."

The opening shindig -- scheduled to take place from 3 to 6 p.m. Saturday, November 5 -- will feature Ewen's daughter Sandy (The Weird Weeds, various side projects) playing improvised guitar. She'll be joined by no-joke, big-time experimentalist Damon Smith on stand-up bass.

On Saturday, November 19, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., the exhibition will be a featured post-up spot for Artcrawl 2011.

Canal Street Gallery, located at 2219 Canal, is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday through Sunday. For more information, check out the Canal Street Gallery Web site.

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