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While the title for “Pretty Little Things” at the Brentwood Arts Exchange could address either the cheeky pin-up girls mounted on three of its walls or the more than 100 small studies adorning its fourth, it might more appropriately refer to the medium of each work: cut paper. For the past three years, artist Sherill Anne Gross has taken to her compositions with scissors and knife, wielding her tools to carve out intricate shapes and creating works that possess tremendous depth and detail. Composed from both the positive shapes of Gross’ cut-outs and parts of the removed interior, the pin-up girls recall both ends of Tom Wesselmann’s career, from his Great American Nudes to his Drop-Outs. Gross’ pin-ups are precise, but more impressive are her small studies from 2007, when she challenged herself to create four compositions a week (one per day, Monday-Thursday), resulting in 209 by the end of the year. The subject matter and craft of these little works vary, but the weight of such an undertaking is astounding.

“Pretty Little Things” is on view 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. to July 17 at the Brentwood Arts Exchange at Gateway Arts Center, 3901 Rhode Island Ave., Brentwood, Md. Free. (301) 277-2863.

Image courtesy of the artist.