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The Mop Makers : New Paintings by Gustave Blache III

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Gustave Blache is a youthful New Orleanian now making a name for himself in New York. Reflecting a rather Francophile style reminiscent of Degas with overtones of Courbet, his paintings have appeared in old-master exhibitions in which he was the only living artist. Despite ties to 19th century France and 21st century New York, he regularly returns home, and if the paintings in this Mop Makers show suggest prosaic scenes that Degas might have painted in New Orleans over a century ago, they actually depict workers at an employment program at our present-day Lighthouse for the Blind. A product of NOCCA and the youth art projects presided over by Richard Thomas, Blache tempers the immediacy of the present with a deeper perspective rooted firmly in the past. -- D. Eric Bookhardt

Through December

Cole Pratt Gallery, 3800 Magazine St., 891-6789; www.coleprattgallery.com

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