Becky Fehsenfeld: "The Rural Life" review 

3 and a half stars

Becky Fehsenfeld Fine Art Gallery

Extensive world travel informs Becky Fehsenfeld's work. Among the subjects in her current show are African seamstresses, Chinese farmers and the rural landscapes they inhabit (with a smattering of Hoosier and European landscapes as well). In the oil on linen "Shandong Sunset," you can discern two shadowy figures - what appears to be a man with an ox - in a field. This landscape glows in hues of pink, orange and red, with an overlay of vertical gray brushstrokes. The figures are submerged in the warm bath of the landscape while in "Village Elder, Chang Quing," said figure's coat glows in multiple incandescent colors that bleed into the background. Fehsenfeld's work here, as elsewhere, veers away from realism towards a colorful expressionism. In her paintings, you may feel that she demonstrates compassion for her rural subjects. Or you may just feel that she romanticizes them. In any case, it's difficult to deny the skill and confidence with which she communicates her vision. Through March 15; 317-732-0026,

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