Keith Ragone & Jack Larimore exhibit reviewed in Philadelphia Inquirer

Two longtime friends long known to the Philadelphia art scene — Keith Ragone, a painter, and Jack Larimore, a furniture-maker-turned sculptor, are paired in a show at Snyderman-Works Gallery.

Using colors inspired by the salt marshes and estuaries near his home in Cumberland County, N.J., Ragone has made a series of abstract paintings that seems to capture the quality of light on a particular day, at a particular time. The most evocative of these paintings are the most atmospheric ones, such as Cat Feet and Sea Smoke, both of which immediately suggest the experience of being in a fog-shrouded landscape. Ragone is also showing a group of transcendently beautiful watercolors, whose simple strokes of transparent color are like trails of clouds.

In his first one-person exhibition of his sculptures, Larimore displays his acute eye for the anthropomorphic qualities of wood — especially ones that reference the humorous and the erotic. Often, Larimore will place a small, delicate handmade object such as a pair of tiny sculpted hands or a curvaceous blown-glass beaker inside a larger, carved wood form, as if the smaller object is the soul of the wood.

His transformations of found and salvaged wood, cast glass, and other materials are winsome, tongue-in-cheek (check out his randy version of Brancusi’s The Kiss) and utterly American.

Snyderman-Works Gallery, 303 Cherry St., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. 215-238-9576 or Through June 23.
-Edie Newhall