A new gallery featuring three accomplished artists will celebrate its grand opening at Riverview Station on Saturday, February 29, from 1–5 p.m. Unit #104 in Riverview Station features paintings by Raphaella Vaisseau and photographs by Walter Arnold and Karen Maugans. Karen, who also acts as curator for the gallery, has occupied the unit since 2018. When recently given the opportunity to expand into an additional 1,200 square feet, she invited Raphaella and Walter to join her.
Raphaella works in acrylics and watercolors. “Raphaella’s vibrant watercolor and acrylic paintings are simultaneously bold and subtle with hues, shapes and textures that I knew would work well with my richly colored still life images,” says Karen. Karen’s images are inspired by 17th century European master painters. She meticulously composes the scene and then photographs in a dark studio with targeted lighting to bring out a full spectrum of rich hues and detail. “As a lover of nature, color and detail, I appreciate the beautifully captured brilliance of both Walter’s and Karen’s work,” says Raphaella. “I knew my layered watercolor art would fit in perfectly with these two photographers.”
Karen and Walter met while exhibiting at fine art festivals throughout the southeastern US. Both photographers infuse their images into sheets of aluminum. “I was fascinated by Walter’s imagery of abandoned historical sites and the depth of knowledge he’d acquired from photographing them,” Karen says. “We are two photographers creating images in completely different ways. Knowing that Walter’s Art of Abandonment photography was in great demand, I held little hope that he would join me as the third artist in my gallery space, and I was delighted when he accepted.”
Walter began his Art of Abandonment photography series, which highlights historic forgotten places, in 2009. “The exposed brick walls, high ceilings and industrial stylings of the gallery at #104 Riverview Station compliment the Art of Abandonment series well,” says Walter. “Patrons of the arts will enjoy the exhibition of my work alongside Karen and Raphaella, whose work is different in many ways, yet simultaneously unifying.”
Riverview Station is located at 191 Lyman Street in Asheville’s River Arts District.