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GearBox Gallery Artist Talk: Linda Ellinwood, Diane Williams & Katayoun Bahrami

November 18 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm


GearBox Gallery presents Palmy Paradox, sculptures by Linda Ellinwood and paintings by Diane Williams, that invite contemplation of the paradoxical nature of beauty, decay, and the hidden complexities within seemingly simple forms.

Ellinwood’s use of foraged natural materials as her primary medium since the 80s, ranges from tiny intimate sculptures to all-encompassing installations filling entire rooms. A piece of driftwood, pods, seeds or dried kelp may linger for years in the studio before she finds the right combination of elements. Although it takes hours of moving, rearranging, drilling, gluing, sanding, and even starting over to achieve that effect, the resulting sculpture then feels like it was always meant to exist together, as if it has actually grown together–a little bit of alchemy.

Williams explores landscapes that at first appear infinite, but on closer investigation, are a celebration of the eroding and ever changing. Her work involves layering paint and rice paper to create intricate textures. She skillfully scrapes through the surface, giving rise to jagged, imperfect, and unpredictable shapes. The result is a striking contrast of warm and cool colors, hard and soft surfaces, which masterfully balances between weight and weightlessness. The natural landscape and surface of her paintings appear timeless but reveal the story of time itself.

The heart of this show is embodied in its title PALMY – glorious, delightful, flourishing, thriving, peaceful, joyous, hilarious; PARADOX – ambiguity, mystery, enigma.


Linda Ellinwood began studying art with an arts minor at Eastern Michigan University while majoring in special education for the visually handicapped. After 2 1/2 years, she took a break to get her PhT and when she resumed, she got her BFA from Western Michigan University in painting. During the next ten years she had transitioned to three-dimensional work and was accepted to California College of Arts and Crafts in both the sculpture and textiles departments. She received her MFA in Textiles from CCAC IN 1981. Since then, she has shown her work in exhibitions throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and is a current member of GearBox Gallery.

Diane Williams is known for her intuitive sense of color, confident brushwork, and masterful integration of mediums. Her dynamic juxtaposition of forms and textures, often created on a monumental scale, offer endless journeys of discovery for viewers. Born in California, Williams has lived in Jamaica and Costa Rica, and now has studios in Crockett and Benicia CA. Her works have been included in exhibitions at the DeYoung Museum San Francisco, Triton Museum, San Jose, San Luis Obispo Museum of Modern Art, and Marin Museum of Contemporary Art. She received a BA from The University of California, Santa Barbara with distinction in the major of studio art, then earned a Master of Art at California State University, Sacramento. She earned a Master of Fine Arts at John F. Kennedy University in Arts and Consciousness studies, where she received the Susan Seddon Boulet Award. She also studied in Hangzhou China on a cultural exchange program. Williams is a member artist at GearBox Gallery.

GearBox Gallery proudly presents a special inner room installation: The Weight of the Wall by jury winner Katayoun Bahrami, an Iranian multidisciplinary artist and curator living and working in the Bay Area. Her artistic interest focuses on the interaction between women’s bodies as targets/performers, affected by boundaries that act as catalysts between the two. Bahrami draws her inspiration from Iranian women’s history to create work that combines social practice, performance, and textile-based installation. She uses mixed-media pieces, installations, textiles, videos, and photographs to convey her ideas. Katayoun Bahrami’s work has been exhibited across the US and internationally, including at the LoosenArt Gallery, Rome; the Broad Art Center, Los Angeles; the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles; the Murphy and Cadogan Contemporary Art Awards Exhibition, SOMArts Gallery, San Francisco; and the SDA Juried Exhibition, Newberg, Oregon. She has produced performances and artist-led participatory projects for venues that include the Clarion Alley Mural Project, the Legion of Honor Museum in San Francisco, and Berkeley Art Practice. Born in Tehran, Bahrami earned her BFA from the University of Science and Culture in Iran. She graduated from Michigan State University in 2017 with an MA in Arts and Cultural Management—Museum Studies. In 2022, she graduated from California College of the Arts with an MFA in Studio Arts.

Palmy Paradox & Weight of the Wall
October 19 – November 25, 2023
Artist talk: Saturday, November 18, 2 pm
Gallery Hours: Thursdays-Saturdays, 12-5 pm and First Fridays, 5-8 pm


November 18
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm
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Gearbox Gallery
770 West Grand Avenue
Oakland, CA 94612 United States
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(510) 859 - 5208
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