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TO JUNE 7
Jamie Young lives in New England, but for artistic inspiration she regularly visits the undulating riverbanks and farms of Virginia’s Northern Neck, where she paints impressionistic landscapes (as large as 48 by 120 inches) in hues of orange, rose, auburn, and green. For oil paintings, Young’s work is not heavily impastoed, and it’s rather surprisingly gestural. (Twilight on Hewlett Point is pictured.) Close up, works such as Belle Isle are agglomerations of sketchlike strokes that look almost finger-painted; take a few steps further back and they resolve themselves into focussometimes gloriously. Young’s visions range from the swampy After the Storm to the meticulously furrowed plantings of Long Field to the impenetrable forest of Hewlett Point TrailMorning. It’s all so idyllic that it is jarring to learn that what Young actually wants the viewer to understand is how much destruction is going on in her favorite placesshe calls this her “Drought Series.” “Mother Nature is enormously resilient,” she writes, “but clearly even she has limits beyond which full recovery is impossible. We are testing those limits.” What’s odd is how subtle the environmental damage is: The degradation Young captures only heightens the beauty of her subjects. The series is on view from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday, to Saturday, June 7, at the Ralls Collection, 1516 31st St. NW. Free. (202) 342-1754. (Louis Jacobson)