By Nina Bolka
PS Gallery is ringing the new year with their latest installation, a 2012 winter exhibit featuring multiple genres from Missouri artists. Traditional oil on canvas pieces, jewelry, and mixed media works alike welcomed feedback from guests at Saturday night’s reception.

Visitors enjoyed hors d’oeuvres and wine as they mingled with friends and artists with featured work. From Jo Stealy’s ornate, woven gold leaf compositions to Amber Marshal’s dappled glass vases sprinkled throughout the gallery, the body of work were diverse but sensibly installed.

“We always show what we love,” curator and permanent artist Joel Sager said. “We got many submissions and finding what to display is truly an art form in and of itself.”

Sager has nine pieces on display, all of which are mixed media. For this exhibit he deviated from his usual subjects and crafted line-driven landscapes with more brush strokes. His heavy use of blues over textured materials takes the winter sky to the next dimension, giving it a dreary winter feel.

Oil-on-canvas pieces from Kansas City artist Kevin Ritchie are hung at the front of the gallery. His attention to detail and immaculate use of color catches the eye, but soon comes the realization that something is off-balance. For example, in Conspiracy of the Moon, buffalo gather in a picturesque valley with mountains spanning in the distance. On a second take, it appears that the supposed fog in the mountaintops is smoke from an eruptive space ship launching into the sky. Evidently, these buffalo are used to such perturbing noise.

“[Ritchie] has that little element in there that’s so surreal,” intern and artist Leah Bowring says. “He makes you take a second look at what’s going on.”

While the chic reception came to a close, the collection will remain on display until March 31 for the public to enjoy.

“We’ve been in this space for five years, and we hope to continue here as long as we select the right pieces,” Sager said.

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