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Alex Tolstoy - June 2016

Alex Tolstoy, “Watermarks”
Exhibit dates: Wednesday, June 8–Sunday, July 3
Opening Reception: Thursday, June 9, 6:30–8:00 pm

Artist Alex Tolstoy’s worlds have melded together on a sheet of watercolor paper. Her past life as an ocean acoustics mathematician subconsciously informed and inspired her present life as a watercolor artist, as she now paints the moods and forms of the oceans, seas, lakes, ponds, and storms. Her solo exhibit “Watermarks” will be on view at The Art League June 8–July 3, 2016.

Whether it’s the calm of a reflecting pool or the vast and agitated sea, Tolstoy is drawn to capture water. She allows herself to surrender to her medium, letting the paint and water do its job, trying not to control it too much as the image unfolds.

Her style and approach to using watercolor reflects her subject. There’s a natural rhythm and flow to the paint and water on the paper. Her images whisper across the surface, with fluid lines and pools of pigment creating contrast and balance. Moods and details are hinted at rather than fully expressed. “Imagination can do amazing things, and I want the viewer to wander around the picture with their own musings.”

Images range from the readily identifiable, like the Lincoln Monument reflected in the Potomac, to the nearly abstract, open and welcome to interpretation. 

Tolstoy holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in math from George Washington University, and PhD in applied mathematics from the University of Maryland, College Park. She worked as a research scientist/mathematician for over 40 years, and specialized in ocean acoustics for over 30 years.

She began studying watercolor in 2008 with Barbara Januszkiewicz of the Corcoran College of Art & Design and fell in love with the unpredictable, quirky nature of the medium. Tolstoy is an award winning watercolorist and a member of The Art League, the McLean Project of the Arts, the Maryland Federation of Art, the Yellow Barn Studio, the McLean Art Society, the Washington Project for the Arts, the Potomac Valley Watercolorists, and the American Watercolor Society. She is married to professional photographer Ron Colbroth.

Gallery hours:
Monday–Saturday: 10:00 am–6:00 pm
Thursday: 10:00 am–9:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 noon–6:00 pm

*The Torpedo Factory may close at 5:00 pm for events. Please check Today's Hours to see if this affects your visit. 



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