I particularly liked the small pieces by Meg Regelous, whose work I've seen before at the Healdsburg Center for the Arts. She's showing a drawing, an etching, and what looks like a linocut, suggesting the wide range of her activities. She's young, enthusiastic, and stylistically still evolving, perhaps, but I look forward to watching her career.
There is no pretense of prettiness in Watson's art or the way it's shown. The work is direct, simple, accessible, unfinished, bare. The corners of the sheets are perforated with overlapping nail holes, evidence of previous hangings. It was hard to resist the temptation to play with the dangling needles or to run a finger over the bite marks or to feel the surface of the small plastic piece attached to Nothing More/Less #1. I suspect Watson wouldn't have minded. The works invite interplay. They have a palpable vulnerability. They are open to accident, vandalism, wear, and she has deliberately chosen non-archival materials. Nothing More/Less #2 uses strips of what look like black electrician's tape (when I asked, she explained the tape was the seal from a tin of printmaking ink) and other inexpensive plastic tapes that will deteriorate and probably stain the underlying sheet. She told me human beings don't last forever and that their art shouldn't either. I found the insouciance behind the works made me a little uncomfortable. I almost wanted to clean them up, to make them neater--yet I found these unabashedly unpretentious pieces of art strangely compelling at the same time.
I thought pieces by Jamie Drobnick, Angella Dela Cruz, and Cammy York also of interest. The show at Griffin Map Design & Gallery (405 East D Street, Suites D and F, Petaluma, CA 94952--707 347-9009) will run through March 28. Curator Justin Ringlein has chosen some good art. Worth a visit. Next to the Ice House Gallery (which will be showing new work from March 14).