Cara Thayer and Louie Van Patten's paintings are on display in Ruud Gallery in Bend.
By Kaycee Anseth-Townsend
The vivid, Technicolor hands of Cara Thayer and Louie Van Patten's paintings pull you into the Ruud Gallery as soon as you step into the hushed, cool space. Not super realism, yet not afraid of fooling the eye from twenty paces, the couple's new works have an underlying tension to them, illustrated by wringing, skeletal hands, by grimacing flesh, or, in the case of one dramatic scene, "The Persistence of Repressed Thoughts III," an ambiguous figure jails the other in a contorted headlock.
In this painting, the dominant figure is Thayer, the trapped figure Van Patten. But this is an arbitrary acknowledgement. Yes, they are a couple. Yes, they share canvases and brushes, working on large, luscious oil paintings together. No, they can't really point out who painted what. And yes, they get along just fine, if you were wondering.