Art & Culture

Dangerous Beauty


I used this term two weeks ago when describing a C. Jeré nailhead sculpture. 

It came to mind last night while viewing the current exhibit at Hemphill Fine Arts in

DC.  Julie Wolfe’s work includes paintings, prints and sculptures.  And her name suits  

her work – it’s often a juxtaposition of loveliness and peril.  Creative tension is a concept

that I always find intriguing in art and design.  Beauty is so much more interesting when its

twisted on its head; you really see it up against something dark.  Ms. Wolfe's work incorporates

colorful, organic images alongside macabre symbols of death and violence. The contrast enlivens

the sweet and exuberant while crystallizing the dark yet inevitable.  A metaphorical viewpoint for

life itself.  See Hemphill’s press release below for more on this dynamic, enigmatic artist.


Julie Wolfe

Who conquers whom in the battle between life and death?

The juxtaposition of flourishing life with lurking death in Julie

Wolfe's artwork addresses the artist's preoccupation with

corruptive elements that challenge the strength of nature.

Wolfe's imagery reveals the interconnectedness of life and

death, demonstrating their unavoidable coexistence.  However

powerful, these formidable renderings are intentionally covert.

Not only does Wolfe subtly incorporate sinister creatures and

violent symbols, but she succeeds in making them beautiful.  Her

artwork parallels the intersections between beauty and violence

that exist within and across cultures. Through her artwork, Wolfe

blurs the lines between good and evil, tranquility and violence

 and decay and regeneration, portraying these forces as less

antagonistic and more interconnected than their definitions suggest.






Copy of TP 11-11-10 014


La Frontera, 2010
multiple-color silkscreen on Arches paper with glass beads

30 1/4” x 30 1/4”






JulieWolfe 11-11-10 017 (13)


Chippy, 2010
oil, graphite, glass shards and sterling silver on wood panel

 30 x 30






Copy of TP 11-11-10 010  

Foraging Series II, 2010
oil, graphite, and glass shards on canvas
72" x 60"







TAR, 2010
glass enamel on copper, encaustic, wood and oil on wood panel
24" x 24"






JulieWolfe 11-11-10 017 (3)


This vignette of four Wolfe pieces was incredible:


Ambigram IV and Ambigram V, 2010
mixed media on glass

9 3/8” x 7”


The Wind Cries Mary, 2010
knuckle ring on sterling silver and alabaster stand

18K yellow gold, sterling sliver, opals and yellow sapphires


Skull & Sword, 2010
bronze skull set with garnets

18K yellow gold hammered chain

 18K yellow gold eucalyptus pod

sword in 18K gold, sterling silver, set with opal



JulieWolfe 11-11-10 017 (6)





 DB final

I’m wearing a Wolfe Knuckle Ring as necklace today.

I think this may be my new favorite accessory.








Julie Wolfe’s exhibit will run through December 23.  It’s worth a stop.  George

Hemphill and his staff are a joy to work with whether you are new to the art world

or if you would like to add to an existing collection.  A Huntley & Co. favorite! 


Hemphill Fine Arts

1515 14th Street NW

Washington, DC 20005



* First 4 images provided by the artist/Hemphill.





Tricia xo



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