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Jazz Masters 

When: March 15-April 13 2008

Art can be purely perceptual (optical) or purely conceptual (intellectual), but most art embraces both eye and mind. James Gayles, an eminent local artist, illustrator, Emmy-winning graphic designer and musician, commemorates the jazz greats of the Bay Area, particularly those connected with Oakland's 7th Street club scene of the '40s and '50s, with mixed-media paintings at Swarm Gallery. Jazz, based on improvisations on a melodic structure, is an apt subject for Gayles, whose vibrant, lyrical works in watercolor and acrylic both denote the musicians and connote their musical worlds. Jazz aficionados will find these beautifully rendered portraits on paper musically evocative of heroes Faye, Pharaoh, India, Marcus, Ed, Eddie, Sonny, Dewey, John, Sid, Joshua, Prince, and Earl. A panel discussion on art and jazz is scheduled for March 27. Jazz Masters runs through April 13 at Swarm Gallery (560 Second St., Oakland). SwarmStudios.net or 510-839-2787.


— DeWitt Cheng

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