Excerpt from the review by Linda Chestney in Artscope Magazine:

The work sparkles. Literally. Sometimes projectors shoot images onto diaphanous fabric that displays the work as a moving work of art. Or throws the image onto a solid, white cube in the distance where you become part of the art as you move closer to examine it. A multi-dimensional configuration on one wall holds a massive piece by Barlow, but to participate in it you must peer through opaque folks of white film gauze, causing shadows—with some effort on the part of the viewer—to perceive the intended result.

Deborah Barlow’s stunning works bring to mind microscopic forms, or moonscapes, or simply nonrepresentational images of color, texture, and scale that you can get lost in. Through an unexpected combination of pigments, metallic powders and a variety of substrates, her paintings wonderfully suggest the complexity of a multi-layered and visually rich world…

“Clew” helps viewers step outside of their preconceived ideas and expectations. The disorientations serve as cracks that let in the light. I viewed/listened to this experience (it’s beyond “exhibition”) solo, which enhanced the experience undoubtedly because there were no distractions. Ideal. It did indeed touch me and move me towards new dimensions.

(Full text of review here)

Excerpt from the review by Nicole Pellaton, The Exeter Bulletin

“Clew: A Rich and Rewarding Disorientation” opened on January 20 as an immersive, multisensory experience. Like its eponym — “clew” traces back to the ball of thread Ariadne gave Theseus to guide him out of the labyrinth, and also refers to part of a ship’s sail and hammock rigging — the exhibition encourages exploration and risk-taking. A futon on the floor invites you to lie down and look up at a painting suspended at a rakish tilt from the ceiling. A soundscape deconstructs the human voice. Mirrors reflect visitors and hidden fragments of text. Trays of salt and crystals provoke impromptu drawing. Magnifying glasses and flashlights virtually mandate up-close inspection. Videos play throughout the gallery. And nowhere do you find traditional signs explaining the art.

Some visitors assess the space warily. Others engage without hesitation. One woman spontaneously performs a shadow play with her hands, using a reading lamp as light and a painting as backdrop. Children cavort, making their own marks in the salt trays, rearranging mirrors and leaving drawings on the wall for others to enjoy. Meditation groups come to feel the energy and slow down.

(Full text of review here)