Na­ture’s Grasp

The Washington Post Sunday - - ARTS & STYLE -

The ti­tle of Lee Arts Cen­ter’s show, “Na­ture’s Grasp,” is ope­nended. The work is not. Our en­vi­ron­ment is un­der as­sault in most of these prints, which fea­ture skulls, skele­tons, air­borne bombers and other fore­bod­ing mo­tifs. Joseph Ve­lasquez’s mod­ern-day At­las sup­ports an Earth on which the U.S. is aflame. In Dy­lan Gold­berger’s ve­gan vi­sion, an­i­mals of­ten eaten by hu­mans in­stead dine on them. Steven Munoz’s seem­ingly bu­colic vi­sion of bees and flow­ers is ti­tled “Mon­santo Is the Devil.”

There are nearly as many styles as there are artists, but most of the 18 con­trib­u­tors have an affin­ity for pop art, edgy comics and the sharply in­cised lines of wood­blocks and scratch­boards. These can be em­ployed to de­pict both sick­ness and heal­ing, as in Jun Lee’s the­mat­i­cally bi­sected print of a toxic city grow­ing into a tree that flour­ishes, up­side-down, be­neath it. Ac­cord­ing to this jux­ta­po­si­tion, it may still be pos­si­ble to flip the script.

Na­ture’s Grasp On view through May 31 at Lee Arts Cen­ter, 5722 Lee Hwy., Ar­ling­ton. 703-228-0560. ar­ling­ /venues/lee-arts­cen­ter.aspx.

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