Featured Artist for June

"Recent Works"


Al Junek


Asheville Gallery of Art will feature the work of Al Junek during the month of June. His show, titled “Recent Works,” will feature Junek’s focus on the atmospheric landscape of mist, fog, or colorful skies so typical of the weather systems found in our mountain area. “I try to share the beauty of a particular place or moment in a way that will transport viewers to that spot so they can experience much the same sights or feelings that moved me to stop and take it in,” says Junek.


The artist is fascinated by light and its resulting values, which are captured in many of his works. Junek attributes his affinity for painting atmospheric effects to having lived in coastal areas over the years and now living in the Blue Ridge. Most of the works in the show will be watercolor or pastel on paper along with some pencil drawings. Also included in the exhibit will be a sprinkling of experimental watercolors on canvas and birch panel.


A native of Texas, Junek began painting in 1989 after formal training at the Baton Rouge Fine Arts Academy. He has continued his studies in workshops taught by nationally known artists. His works hang in numerous private and corporate collections as well as in museums. Junek resides in Hendersonville, having moved to the area in 2000 after retiring from a career in engineering.


The show will run June 1 through 30. The public is invited to the opening reception on June 5, 5 to 8 p.m., where they can view Junek’s work as well as the works of the 27 other gallery artists. Asheville Gallery of Art is located at 16 College Street, across from Pritchard Park in downtown Asheville. Regular gallery hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Sunday 1 to 4 p.m. You can contact the gallery at 828-251-5796, or visit their website at www.ashevillegallery-of-art.com.

A Visual Contemplation: Land, Sea and Sky"

Asheville Gallery of Art’s April show, “A Visual Contemplation: Land, Sea and Sky,” is a dual presentation of works by Karen Keil Brown and Gayle Havens. Their complementary styles showcase a breadth of vision and technique in landscape painting. The show runs April 1-30 during gallery hours, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. The gallery, located at 82 Patton Avenue in Asheville, across from Pritchard Park, will host a reception for the artists on Friday, April 5, from 5-8 p.m. Everyone is cordially invited to stop by. 

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"As Far As the Eye Can See" Karen Keil Brown

The artist continues to experiment with new techniques by taking workshops and classes at the Arts Student Leagueof New York in New York City. She creates her paintings using either acrylic or oil paints on canvas, while maintaining the meditative freedom and breath of her signature mark and style in either medium. “In the series for the show, I approach my landscape paintings with a brush and palette knife, bringing texture and energy to the canvas.” She primarily paints in her studio in the River Arts District.

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"The Mountains Float Upon the Sky" Karen Keil Brown

Karen Keil Brown seeks to discover a delicate balance between earth and sky, realism and abstraction. “I try to focus the viewer’s vision on a moment of serenity to reveal an elemental and transcendent dance between atmosphere and light.” The artist says she paints with an intuitive and expressive brushstroke.

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"Rolling Mist" Karen Keil Brown

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"Spring Rains" Karen Keil Brown

Originally from New Jersey, Karen was raised in Asheville. She and her husband have three grown artistic daughters, Karen has worked as a professional artist for over 30 years. She received her BA in Fine Arts from the University of North Carolina, Asheville, where she now serves as a Board Trustee. Karen is also an avid supporter of Arts for Life. Her paintings are found in numerous private and corporate collections and have been in exhibitions nationwide.   

Gayle Havens says, “I paint in a representational and impressionistic manner, striving for simplicity, directness of brushstroke, and to honor the integrity of the subject. Landscapes and seascapes are primary sources for my inspiration. I am also drawn to quiet places where nature meets human artifacts and creates an enduring sense of place.”

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"Blue Wave" Gayle Havens

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"Winter Barn" Gayle Havens

Gayle, a new member of Asheville Gallery, studied studio art and art history as an undergraduate at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro and the University of New Mexico. She set aside painting for many years to run a business and raise a family, returning to it in 2006. Gayle is a Signature Member of the Baltimore Watercolor Society and Virginia Watercolor Society, a juried member of the Women Painters of the Southeast, and a member of the Pennsylvania Watercolor Society, the Southern Watercolor Society, and American Watercolor Society. 

In order to honor the integrity and harmony of a subject, the artist says, she strives to capture its unique atmospheric quality and color; referred to by Impressionists as the “envelope of light." Gayle uses a limited palette in each painting, often preferring muted, earth-colored pigments rather than more saturated colors to convey this atmosphere. Watercolors are her medium of choice. “They have utterly captivated my imagination with their transparent, fluid, and spontaneous attributes."

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"Blue Ridge Parkway" Gayle Havens

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"Towards Danfuskie" Gayle Havens

Keil Brown’s and Haven’s work, as well as the paintings of the other 29 gallery members, will be on display and for sale through the month of April. For further information about this show, you can contact Asheville Gallery of Art at (828) 251-5796, visit the gallery website at www.ashevillegallery-of-art.com, or go to the gallery Facebook page.