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“Then & Now,” an ex­hi­bi­tion of paint­ings by Sammy Peters, re­veals at least one cen­tral point — that the artist has ded­i­cated him­self to the pos­si­bil­i­ties of ab­strac­tion through­out his en­tire ca­reer. Clos­ing to­day, but with a re­cep­tion tonight, the dis­play of 23 works in the Hyde Gallery at Mem­phis Col­lege of Art’s Nesin Grad­u­ate Cen­ter ranges chrono­log­i­cally from 1962 to this year, prov­ing that over 54 years an artist’s tech­nique may evolve while his vi­sion re­mains steady and true.

The motto on the artist’s web­site is “Paint­ing … al­ways paint­ing,” and in­deed the ev­i­dence of this dis­play re­veals a man ob­sessed with shape, form, ges­ture and ac­tion, con­stantly se­duced by the el­e­men­tal, pli­able, pro­tean na­ture of the pig­ment it­self and the es­sen­tial soli­tude of an artist fac­ing a blank can­vas with equal parts thought­ful­ness and ex­cite­ment. Although he has spent the ma­jor­ity of his life in Lit­tle Rock, Ar­kan­sas, and was ed­u­cated Cir­cuitous Suc­ces­sion Gallery, 500 S. Sec­ond: Christo­pher St. John, Ja­son Stout, Juan Rojo, Robert Moler: “Four Painters [] Four Walls.” New work. Open­ing re­cep­tion 6-9 p.m. Fri­day. 901-229-1041. cir­cuitous­suc­ces­ The Gallery at St. George’s Epis­co­pal Church, 2425 S. Ger­man­town Road: “Art Wild: Artists of the Epis­co­pal Dio­cese of West Ten­nessee,” Mon­day through Oct. 30. Ex­hibit will be part of a cel­e­bra­tion of the arts which will in­clude Tim Sharp and Wes Ram­say’s “Come Sammy Peters, “Recog­ni­tion: pres­ence; con­cealed,” oil and mixed me­dia on can­vas, 72-by-144 inches, 2005. From “Then and Now” at the Mem­phis Col­lege of Art’s Hyde Gallery.

in that state, there is noth­ing in­su­lar or South­ern about Peters’ work. His ac­com­plish­ment rests on a highly in­di­vid­u­al­ized vo­cab­u­lary of sign, color and move­ment that achieves in­ter­na­tional scope. To en­ter a gallery filled with his work is to step into a realm that’s as so­phis­ti­cated as it is ec­cen­tric, as droll as it is mys­ti­cal, as ex­u­ber­ant and col­or­ful as it is con­tem­pla­tive. Sev­eral of these paint­ings are so im­mense that you feel as if you ac­tu­ally are step­ping into them.

The ear­li­est piece in the

Away to the Skies: A High Lone­some Blue­grass Mass,” per­formed by the Rhodes Singers and Women’s Cho­rus, 7:30 p.m. Oct. 7. A re­cep­tion hon­or­ing the per­form­ers and the artists fol­lows per­for­mance. 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Mon­day through Fri­day; 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Sun­day. 901-754-7282. Gallery Ten Ninety One, 7151 Cherry Farms Road (WKNO Dig­i­tal Me­dia Cen­ter), Cor­dova: Win­ter­arts 2016 Pre­view Show,” Mon­day through Oct. 28. Open­ing re­cep­tion 2-4 p.m. Oct. 9. Hours: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Mon­day through Fri­day. 901-458-2521.

ex­hi­bi­tion, from 1962, is “Nosegay with Kohlrabi,” oil and mixed me­dia on can­vas (as most of these are) and a splashy, fire­works dis­play of punchy and flo­ral brush­work bear­ing lit­tle re­sem­blance to the later works ex­cept in its sense of rhythm. That qual­ity is as fun­da­men­tal to a paint­ing by Sammy Peters as it is to a piece of mu­sic; you can­not look at one of his works with­out be­ing drawn in to the sen­sa­tion of shift­ing mo­bil­ity and de­vel­op­ment. Peters em­ploys ev­ery tech­nique

Mem­phis Botanic Gar­den, 750 Cherry Road in Audubon Park: “Hughes Art Show,” Tues­day through Oct. 31 in Vis­i­tors Cen­ter Gallery. Open­ing re­cep­tion 5-8 p.m. Oct. 12. Works in var­i­ous me­dia by Dr. Allen Hughes, Nancy Hughes Coe, Anne Hughes Sayle, Anne Hightower Trainer, Jane Hughes Coble, El­iz­a­beth Coe Wade. Also, “Fred Rawl­in­son Art Show,” through Nov. 1 in Fratelli’s Cafe Gallery. 901636-4100. Mem­phis Col­lege of Art’s Nesin Grad­u­ate School, 477 S. Main: Sammy Peters: “Then & Now,” in Hyde Gallery. Clos­ing re­cep­tion 6-9

in the in­tu­itive cre­ation of an ab­stract paint­ing — over-and -un­der-paint­ing, scrap­ing, col­lag­ing and scum­bling, spat­ter­ing and drip­ping, a va­ri­ety of marks and brush­strokes — and al­ways with flu­id­ity and flu­ency. This is an artist whose re­la­tion­ship to the paint­ing is emo­tional, psy­cho­log­i­cal and in­ti­mate.

Within this aura of ter­rific brio, the artist re­veals his love of mess and clut­ter, of brash and dishar­mo­nious col­oration. He jux­ta­poses ugly, gar­ish

p.m. Fri­day. Hours: noon-5 p.m. Mon­day through Fri­day; noon-7 p.m. Satur­day. 901272-5100. Art Mu­seum of the Uni­ver­sity of Mem­phis (Com­mu­ni­ca­tion and Fine Arts Build­ing), 3750 Nor­ris­wood: “Fly­ing Col­ors: Asafo Flags of the Fante,” through Oct. 1. 901-678-2224. mem­ Chris­tian Brothers Uni­ver­sity Plough Li­brary (Bev­erly & Sam Ross Gallery), 650 East Park­way S.: “Ha­pax Le­gom­ena: Re­cent Art­work by Cory Dugan” in Through to­day at the Hyde Gallery, Nesin Grad­u­ate Cen­ter, 477 S. Main. Re­cep­tion 6-9 tonight in con­junc­tion with South Main Art Trol­ley Tour. Call 901-2725111, or visit

hues and chal­lenges us to ac­com­mo­date his taste for strange in­evitabil­ity; see, for ex­am­ple, “Un­ex­am­ined Stereo­types,” from 1987, and its clash­ing ar­eas of scar­let and red-or­ange, or this year’s “Uni­ver­sal: fun­da­men­tal; de­pic­tion,” with its con­trast­ing ver­ti­cal and hor­i­zon­tal stripes and planes of reds, blacks and yel­lows. The flurry and fury of the artist’s ges­tures, the way­ward splashes and splotches, the thick lines that be­gin nowhere and dis­solve into else­where — all are in­di­ca­tions of a sig­nif­i­cant con­fronta­tion with the sur­face of the paint­ing and a record of a rest­less, cu­ri­ous imag­i­na­tion. The can­vas and pig­ment mark the tracks of their own

Main Gallery and “Seek­ing Sal­va­tion: Pho­to­graphs by Paul Clarke” in Gallery Foyer. Both through Oct. 12. 901321-3432. Clough-han­son Gallery (Rhodes Col­lege), 2000 North Park­way: Dread Scott, Mariam Ghani, Terry Lynn, Da­mon Davi: “The Weight of Hope,” through Oct. 24. Group ex­hi­bi­tion. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tues­day through Satur­day. 901-8433442. Café Gallery at Play­house on the Square, 66 S. Cooper: Jimmy Crosth­wait: mak­ing.

In the past 20 or so years, at least as in­di­cated in this ex­hi­bi­tion, Peters’ work has deep­ened and be­come more meta­phys­i­cal, per­haps tinged by in­ti­ma­tions of mor­tal­ity. Not that pieces from the 21st cen­tury are not as enig­matic or her­metic as pre­vi­ous work; this artist has al­ways dealt with the un­read­able. A large paint­ing like “Ex­is­tence: iso­la­tion; rea­son,” from 2005, though, seems to of­fer a feel­ing of spare­ness and de­lib­er­a­tion, a sense of dis­cre­tion that im­plies hard-won wis­dom amid the throes of ex­pe­ri­ence and con­fi­dence leav­ened by hu­mil­ity.

Var­i­ous forms of me­dia have been filled with sto­ries re­cently about the sale of MCA’S Nesin build­ing on South Main to de­vel­op­ers and its pend­ing re­mod­el­ing as a bou­tique ho­tel.

That tran­si­tion will not oc­cur im­me­di­ately, and the col­lege plans a ros­ter of ex­hi­bi­tions there through the end of 2016.

Peters is also show­ing work at Jay Etkin Gallery, 942 S. Cooper, through Sun­day.

“Mazes, Mar­i­onettes, Zen Chimes, and More,” art­work. Through Oct. 23. Church Health Gallery, 1115 Union Ave.: Frank Baer: Pho­tog­ra­phy, through Oct. 21. Por­tion of pro­ceeds from sales ben­e­fit Church Health Cen­ter. Eclectic Eye, 242 S. Cooper: Mag­gie Russell: “The Bless­ing of Good Dreams,” through Nov. 9. 901-276-3937. Mem­phis Botanic Gar­den, 750 Cherry Road in Audubon Park: Katie Maish: “La­bor,” ends Satur­day in Vis­i­tors Cen­ter Gallery. 901-6364100.

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