Arts & Culture

A fresh perspective at San Luis Obispo County Museum of Art show

"Sometimes a fresh perspective it’s the stranger that sees with us in our best light, finding dramatic beauty in what might otherwise appear banal or unremarkable,” according to materials describing a current exhibit at the San Luis Obispo County Museum of Art.

Though the words were written about paintings of American places by Barcelona artist Joan Longas, they could just as well describe the international photographs by Gary Dwyer on display in the adjoining gallery.

The photographic quality of Longas’ impressions of Shell Beach area motels, liquor stores and gas stations contrast well with Dwyer’s large-scale photos that incorporate collage and layers. Neither offers what the tourist or native would see with the naked eye.

“Impressions of a Stranger” is the first solo museum exhibit in the United States by Longas, who visits his daughter in San Luis Obispo County each summer.

“Seeing, Thinking, Living,” Dwyer’s exhibit, draws on more than 20 years working in 47 countries. The photographer, featured in several books also on display at SLOMA, retired as professor emeritus of landscape architecture at Cal Poly in 2010.

Also on display at the museum are 8-1/2-by-11-inch prints by members of the Central Coast Printmakers. The traditional printmaking works are grouped by relief prints, collagraphs and intaglio methods and priced at $100 each.

SLOMA will host a movie night at 7 p.m. July 21. “Bel Borba Aqui” is a portrait of Brazilian artist Bel Borba called “the people’s Picasso.” The 57-year-old artist creates public art in his hometown of Salvador de Bahia.

Films are screened on the third Monday of each month with a suggested donation of $5 for museum members and $7 for nonmembers.

SLOMA is the spot to be for the armchair traveler this month.