Judith McCabe Jarvis

Judith McCabe-Jarvis in Philadephia Inquirer

Posted on Sun, Jul. 18, 2004

A robust sample of the region's art

By Victoria Donohoe

Inquirer Art Critic

Home Works Design.
Judy Jarvis and Teresa Ochoa exhibit many recent paintings - mostly landscapes, cityscapes and still lifes - at Home Works Design in West Chester.

Jarvis, who grew up in Wyndmoor and lives in Chadds Ford, depicts moments of city and suburban life that are casual and fleeting, although the feelings are not. Far from trendy or aggressive, her work is old-fashioned, just gently and quietly there. Is she playing at her preoccupation with nostalgia as she shows the primary importance of surroundings in her art? Her craftsmanlike manipulation of paint materials lets us experience the luminousness of things themselves and allows her natural talent for small delicacies to assert itself.

Ochoa, a new West Chester resident born in Alicante, Spain, who has lived most of her life in Madrid, shows works clustered around a Spanish theme. In these views of the Spanish city of Toledo and close-ups of vegetation, a terse abbreviated style shines through her handling of paint to form a reticent vocabulary. But by trying too hard to create a mood in her Spanish paintings, she dilutes the vigor inherent in her shapes.

The appeal of Ochoa's work is of artmaking from a populist position, canny but modest. Its modernism is a folksy vernacular.

Home Works Design, 117 E. Gay St., West Chester. To Aug. 1. Tuesdays and Thursdays 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Wednesday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 9 p.m; Sundays noon-4. 610-430-7337.

Contact art critic Victoria Donohoe at The Inquirer, 800 River Rd., Conshohocken, Pa. 19428.