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The Artistic Symbolism of a Veil Featured in Rio Gallery Exhibit – 13 May 2016

SALT LAKE CITY — The Painted Veil, a new group exhibition at the Rio Gallery from May 20 to July 8, 2016, extend possible interpretations of the veil.  An artist reception will be held May 20 from 6-9 p.m. during Gallery Stroll.

Veils are rich in symbolism and often thought of as pathways into other realms. They obscure and disguise while prompting curiosity about what lies beyond. Throughout history, the veil has served as a tool for artistic investigation: the veiled virgin sculptures of Strazza and Bernini, the nonrepresentational abstractions of Kandinsky, and the Muslim veil, which has become one of the most powerful symbols in contemporary visual culture.

Curator Jorge Rojas derived the exhibit title from Percy Bysshe Shelley’s poem, “Lift Not the Painted Veil,” in which the veil carries many meanings. The veil separates life and death, serves as a gateway between earthly and heavenly realms, a curtain that one must part to discover true love, and even a cosmic veil that must be pierced to glimpse the mysteries of our origins.

“In this show, the veil is both a shroud obscuring what lies beyond, as well as an object infused with its own mystery,” Rojas says. “But this show is also about seeing, and how the act of seeing can be a philosophical, creative, and even a mystical endeavor, as well as a sensory one.”

Using materials such as glass, paint, and resins, The Painted Veil works require the viewer to look through, into, orbeyond the artwork. Several use transparency, translucency, and opacity to filter light and offer a glimpse into the artist’s engagement with the respective materials.

The Painted Veil features 15 Utah-based artists and includes painting, photography, sculpture, video, and installations by Trent Alvey, Jan Andrews, Christine Baczek, Jared Lindsay Clark, Daniel Everett, Jenevieve Hubbard, Sarinda Jones, Amy Jorgensen, Beth Krensky, Stephanie Leitch, Lizze Määttälä, Colour Maisch, Jared Steffensen, Roland Thompson, and Brian Usher.

The Rio Gallery is a program of the Utah Division of Arts & Museums. It is located inside the Rio Grande Depot at 300 S. Rio Grande Street, Salt Lake City. Gallery hours are M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.