Richland's Allied Arts Gallery exhibit featuring 2 artists

Dori O'Neal, Tri-City HeraldOctober 3, 2013 

The next Allied Arts Gallery exhibition will feature the work of Tom McClelland and Thelma Triplett, both from the Tri-Cities.

McClelland is a well-known sculptor, and Triplett is an award-winning painter.

They titled their show Moving Space and Time.

"Art-making for us is, ultimately, about moving space and time," they said in their combined artist statement. "We manipulate space to both displace it and embrace it through cutting, fitting, modeling, painting, melting and attaching the stuff of mass, which is more space."

To find out what that means, a trip to the Richland gallery for a visual adventure might be in order.

McClelland and Triplett created all the pieces in the exhibition specifically for the Allied Arts show, which opens with a reception for the artists from 1 to 3 p.m. Oct. 6. The work remains at the gallery until Oct. 30.

"Both artists' works in this show are abstracts rather than depictions of reality," said Bob Allen, with the Richland gallery. "Thelma's are the more abstract of the two, leaving it up to the viewer to decide what each painting represents."

McClelland's sculptures, however, are a little easier to comprehend, Allen added.

"The complementing feature between the two might be that Tom takes us one step from the real world while Thelma takes us two steps away," Allen said.

Triplett's intuitive style is something she chooses not to try and explain.

"I do not talk about my art (because) it is for each person to respond in their own way," she explains.

McClelland is a serious sculptor, who likes to splash his art with as much humor as irony. He prefers to keep his work honest -- admitting it's usually confrontational, but never esoteric.

"Humor, irony and intense seriousness is still very present, but all that is combined with a lot of color and movement in the sculptures," he said.

McClelland, who grew up in the Tri-Cities, says he's stretched his artistic style and been inspired during the past two decades by paying attention to other cultures and time periods. He also has several large-scale public art commissions on his rsum and has been involved with archaeological and environmental work.

His largest sculpture to date is a 16-foot bronze statute titled Life's A Puzzle, which he created two years ago and now sits on the Curtis High School campus in Tacoma.

Locally, his art can be seen in the salmon sculptures along the median on Canal Drive that passes under the railroad bridge in Kennewick; the sculpted bronze casting of britches at the corner of Kennewick Avenue and Dayton Street in downtown Kennewick; and a bronze statue of a beloved black Labrador in The Parkway in Richland.

Triplett, originally from the Midwest, moved to the Tri-Cities in 2000 to be near her family. The beauty of the desert and nearby mountains fed her creative soul, she said. And though some of her creativity has evolved into other abstract inspiration, "I am still awed by the landscape and geology of this area," Triplett said.

Triplett worked in the fashion merchandizing business for a while but found it wasn't her cup of tea, she said. She is a member of the Watercolor Society of Indiana, the American Society of Interior Designers, the Indianapolis Museum of Art and the Richland Allied Arts Association.

-- Dori O'Neal: 582-1514; doneal@tricityherald.com; Twitter: @dorioneal

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