East Bay Express PICKS

His, Mine, Ours

February through March 17, 2012

Cuong Ta's ceramics and John Wood's paintings are indeed complementary, in keeping with this show's title. Ta's stoneware vessels, wall plaques, and hemispherical "wall buttons" contrast the rough texture and earthen color of the clay with smooth, deep brown glazes applied in organic and geometric patterns using tape and latex resists. The graphically abstracted natural forms of "Bird," "Bean Pot," and "Balls," the site-specific installation in a closet, a congregation of carved gourds and/or bocce/croquet balls, explore the dance of contrasts found in nature with Arp-like grace. Wood's Abstract Expressionist mixed-media pieces exude a similar cool lyricism; inspired by models, the artist extrapolates and improvises, creating spatially ambiguous but visually rich pictorial spaces. Don't miss "Fragments of His Body," "Dreams Will Have Their Way," and a series of Valentine-themed drawings in the hallway. His, Mine, Ours runs through March 17 at Oakopolis (447 25th St., Oakland). 510-663-6920 or Oakopolis.org

— DeWitt Cheng