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Still Life 

When: Sept. 14-Oct. 22 2011

In 1974, a working-class writer from New York and an artist from Southern California's intellectual elite met in a Berkeley cafe and began a 36-year creative partnership. The work of the collagist Tom Tuthill (who died in 2009) and his surviving partner, the painter Debbie Vinograd, inspired Jacqueline Cooper to reopen her gallery for this retrospective. Tuthill courted "inspired chance" in his postcard-based collages, which he called areas "where clichés and archetypes interact, where the miraculous and mundane embrace ... [in] solemn mockery." Vinograd paints magic-realist still lifes, portraits, nudes, and dream pictures, variously exploring poetic symbolism (flowers, mirrors, drapery), humor, and elegy -- and where those realms overlap. Noteworthy (and perhaps therapeutic): small Kahlovian post-9/11 paintings featuring wild animals, pinkish balloons or bladders, and red paint. Poetry reading by Julia Vinograd and Jan Steckell on Sunday, Sept. 18, at 2 p.m.Still Life runs through October 22 at Autobody Fine Art (1517 Park Ave., Alameda). 510-881-6984 or

— DeWitt Cheng


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