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BravinLee programs is very pleased to present our third exhi bition of work by Charles Ritchie.  BravinLee first learned of Charles Ritc hie’s astonishing work in 2007 on the website of the art collector Mickey C artin. www.cartincollection.com

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Blake Gopnik wrote about Charles Ri tchie’s work in the Washington Post (11/22/09): 

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“His observation i s so evenhanded that he manages to strike a perfect balance between the out side seen through the glass and the domestic interior reflected in it. It's nature's own double exposure\, caught without the help of film.”

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H olland Cotter lauded Ritchie’s Journals in the New York Times (6/1/2007):\n

“Each small book is filled with marvelous watercolors and all but in decipherable writing.  Mr. Ritchie has been making such books for 30 years.   They are extraordinary”  

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Charles Ritchie’s exterior subjects\, t he plots of grass\, trees and foliage\, streetlights\, shadows\, reflection s and neighboring homes are mostly seen in the dark or in early morning lig ht.  They suggest surveillance\; perhaps Spielberg’s suburban poetics or th e menacing banality of Hitchcock’s Rear Window.  However\, the figure is ge nerally no more than implied\, and if you have a dark imagination you may a ssume Peter Lorre or the milkman is lurking in the shadows.

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Ritchie is far more matter of fact in this artist statement:

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Artist Statement:

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Since 1985 I have been drawing from the same window\, observing the evolution of a limited group of subjects. Night ofte n permeates my images\, comingling the streetscape with the reflection of m y studio. I am intrigued with the merging of interior and exterior spaces a nd the associations that arise. Yet\, the pictures begin with the scene and aim to move deeper\, beyond what is seen. Often the invisible is what is m ost evocative and by offering the viewer a context in which essential detai ls are obscured\, I leave things open to interpretation. Night is engaged f or its obscuring qualities.    

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My drawings are constructed over ex tended periods\; months\, even years. Darks are usually mixed from other co lors\, not black\, as a means of keeping warm and cool tonalities in flux. Recently\, I have been studying closely the colors of night and have broade ned my palette to include even more hues. 

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Variation in size\, shap e\, edge\, surface\, and technique are critical issues for me. At any one t ime I am developing many drawings and I often work them for years by buildi ng up layers of pigment and paper and breaking them back down with erasures and revisions. The surfaces evolve over these extended periods leaving pen timenti\, a history of growth. 

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While relying on watercolor as a pr imary medium\, some recent works are created in graphite alone or in combin ation with conté crayon. These friable media allow me to create tone via th e slow accretion of line and offer options for easy erasure.  With these ne w approaches\, I find myself venturing towards the obscuring effects of day light as well as night. 

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After years of scrutiny my subjects have c ontinually accrued greater meaning and mystery for me. As I evolve with the m I aim to come to deeper levels of awareness and to more fully interpret t he magic and mystery behind the surface of things.

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Charles Ritchie\ , 2012\, Silver Spring MD

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In 2011 Ritchie’s one person exhibition a t Gallery Joe in Philadelphia traveled to The Cornell Fine Arts Museum\, Ro llins College\, Winter Park\, FL and in 2009 his work was the subjec t of a focus exhibition with The Cartin Collection @ Ars Libri\, Boston\, M A.  In 2008 Ritchie’s work was featured in “From the Inside Looking Out: Th e Journals\, Drawings and Prints of Charles Ritchie\,” at The Gregg Museum of Art &\; Design\, North Carolina State University\, Raleigh.  Recent g roup exhibitions include “Watercolors” at Phillips de Pury &\; Co.\, New York\, “Falling Through Space Drawn by the Line\,” University of Buffalo A rt Gallery\,” in Buffalo\, and “The Fifth Genre: Considering 21st Century S till Life\,” Galerie Lelong\, New York. The artist’s work is held in an ext ensive list of museum and private collections.

DTEND:20121121 DTSTAMP:20141228T012705 DTSTART:20121019 GEO:40.7500416;-74.0038805 LOCATION:BravinLee Programs\,526 West 26th Street Suite 211\nNew York\, NY 10001 SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:Drawings and Journals \, Charles Ritchie UID:241120 END:VEVENT BEGIN:VEVENT DTEND:20121019T200000 DTSTAMP:20141228T012705 DTSTART:20121019T180000 GEO:40.7500416;-74.0038805 LOCATION:BravinLee Programs\,526 West 26th Street Suite 211\nNew York\, NY 10001 SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:Drawings and Journals \, Charles Ritchie UID:241370 END:VEVENT END:VCALENDAR