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Joseph Pentheroudakis

Born in Athens, Greece, Joseph moved to Chicago in 1968, where he studied linguistics at the University of Chicago (Ph.D., 1977), and in 1992 made Seattle his home. In 2005, after a long career in languages and computational linguistics, he enrolled in the drawing program at Seattle’s Gage Academy of Art, and never looked back.

Joseph works on paper, in pencil or pen and ink; his drawings reflect an interest in abstraction and formalism expressed through repetition and seriality. He is also attracted to digital media and has created a series of iPad drawings. He also works in video, and is cofounder with Barbara Robertson of Take Three, an event presenting short film and video work by local artists.

His drawings have been included in juried exhibitions at the Whatcom Museum, Bellingham, Washington; 10x10x10xTieton, Tieton, Washington; ArtsWest Gallery, Seattle, Washington; Pacific Art League, Palo Alto, California; Louisiana State Student Union Art Gallery, Baton Rouge, Louisiana; and Barrett Art Center, Poughkeepsie, New York, among others. Joseph has also participated in numerous invitational exhibitions, including the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art, Seattle City Hall Gallery, and North Seattle College Art Gallery. Two of his drawings were included in the book Contemporary Drawing – Key Concepts and Techniques, by Margaret Davidson, Random House 2011.

Joseph shares some thoughts with us:

The work in this exhibition represents a shift in my mark-making, although my interest in repetition and all-over composition is alive and well. In the pen and pencil drawings, lines are now used to enclose shapes; shapes in turn become the marks that fill the composition. Connections and balance are still my primary interests.

And – surprise! – color makes a guest appearance here and there, especially in the digital drawings included in the exhibition. I created the drawings on my iPad, which enticed me into working with color. Still, color is subordinate to the linear elements in the work. Can’t really teach an old dog new tricks.

Joseph currently lives on Herron Island, in Washington State.


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