Upcoming art exhibit in Reston Town Center dives into natural world

The installation “Red Dirt Rug” by artist Rena Detrixhe, whose work will be featured in the Tephra Institute of Contemporary Art’s upcoming “Pressing” exhibit (courtesy Tephra ICA)

The Tephra Institute of Contemporary Art is gearing up for its next art exhibition in Reston Town Center.

Scheduled for March 16-May 19, the exhibit, titled “Pressing,” features work by Kansas-based artist Rena Detrixhe and D.C.-based painter Katherine Tzu-Lan Mann. An opening reception and artist talk is set for Saturday, March 16 from 5-7 p.m. at Tephra’s gallery (12001 Market Street, Suite 103).

“Each of the works in this exhibition is a landscape — a vision of a place formed through careful observation and mark making,” Tephra Associate Curator Hannah Barco said. “And each artist’s departure from traditional modes of landscape painting offers a lesson in how to reconfigure our relationship to the natural environment.”

Here’s more from Tephra on the exhibition:

At a moment when much of the social discourse around climate change is politicized, reactionary, and focused on increasingly concerning storms, sea levels, fires, and heatwaves, Detrixhe and Tzu-Lan Mann create intricate and meditative works that reinsert slowness and contemplation back into the conversation about human impact on the environment. While the exhibition title points to the urgent need to address environmental preservation and climate change, it also refers to the gesture of a hand, an intimate touch, that as exemplified by these artists can have great significance.

Detrixhe’s work combines repetitive processes and scavenged materials to produce objects, installations, sculpture, performances and drawings. She received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas in 2013.

Tzu-Lan Mann got her bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a master’s degree from the Maryland Institute of College of Art. She received a Fulbright grant to Taiwan and has exhibited across the world.

According to Tephra, “Pressing” will be presented in conjunction with “Double 194 Years,” a 2019 drawing by artist Steven L. Anderson that the gallery has loaned from the Microsoft Collection.

“Anderson describes his Tree Rings series as ‘a way of growing a drawing,’ mimicking the growth patterns of trees adding layers of bark season after season,” Tephra said in a press release.

The exhibition is supported in part by Lindy and Richard Brewster, ArtsFairfax, and Reston Town Center Association.

A nonprofit formerly known as the Greater Reston Arts Center, Tephra offers free admission to both its main gallery and a second space, Tephra ICA at Signature (11850 Freedom Drive). The main gallery is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday through Saturday, though Saturday visits must be scheduled in advance.

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