Gallery 33, 1400 NW Everett, 219-9900

Through August 31

Lawrence Colburn's exhibition Form in Motion attempts to describe the nuance of space between bodies. In this manner, the work is largely successful; With a loose hand, Colburn renders intriguing, abstract figures posed in intimate confrontations, evoking a sensual atmosphere. However, Colburn is crippled by two circumstances. The most immediate criticism involves presentation: Blocky, black-matte, wood frames maintain a heavy presence. The awkward constructions become a large part of the viewing thus stealing attention from the work.

Secondly, the work is developed from two, contrasting sets of tools that compete for the best translation of Colburn's ideas. One set consists of the traditional combination of acrylic paints and canvas. The pieces derived from these materials form the weaker portion of Colburn's collection. The paint becomes a mere surface atop canvas, failing to accentuate or enliven Colburn's artistic hand.

Conversely, Colburn hits stride using his second tool box which brims with a mixture of blended inks, charcoal, gesso, and conte crayons. These materials echo the fluidity of his mark making and produce engaging results.

Go Big (above) captures two abstract figures dancing; the lead figure carefully dips his partner amidst a group of shadowy onlookers. The cool gesso forms in simple posture are activated by contour lines of a sepia ink wash and frantic orange conte crayon. The appealing hues add to the interest created by Colburn's hand. The physicality of his mark-making becomes the strong point, lending authenticity to his rather poetic capturing of the human connection.