With orange barrels dotting the landscape outside its windows in German Village, Muse Gallery looks to offer a respite from the unsightliness of construction with the opening of "Spirits: Landscape + Body" on July 30.

With orange barrels dotting the landscape outside its windows in German Village, Muse Gallery looks to offer a respite from the unsightliness of construction with the opening of "Spirits: Landscape + Body" on July 30.

In "Spirits," Muse pairs two of the gallery's favorite artists, William McCarthy and Chad Awalt, together for the first time in a show that features nature in all its multidimensional beauty.

McCarthy, a Columbus native and CCAD graduate who now lives in Connecticut, will be showing his oil-on-canvas "atmospheric landscapes" and monotypes.

"The thing that we like about William's work is that he adds this great contemporary twist on a traditional piece," said Muse Gallery manager Hali Robinson.

Awalt, meanwhile, takes fallen trees and transforms them into sensual, organic sculptures portraying the human body. The Georgia-based sculptor often focuses on the female form while staying true to the natural graining of woods such as white oak, ash and cherry.

When deciding which of Muse's 50-plus artists to pair together, Robinson said she and gallery owner Caren Petersen (Robinson's mother) immediately recognized that McCarthy and Awalt would "bring out the beauty in each other's work."

Indeed, Awalt's stunning wood torsos - some of which are inlaid with gold or silver leaf - complement the golden hues found in McCarthy's skies and the silver peeking out in his paintings of marshland.

"William's work just has the same effortless beauty that Chad Awalt's pieces do," Robinson said.

Both artists choose not to use models or photographs. In working from memory alone, McCarthy said his landscapes sometimes suggest the flatness of Ohio, the marshlands of Gloucester, Massachusetts, and the trees of Italy's Umbria region.

Although their work is so different, McCarthy sees similarities in his and Awalt's approaches.

"He has such a natural flow to his work he doesn't get lost in the details. He lets the wood speak for itself much like I let the paint speak for itself," McCarthy said.

Although solitude is manifest in both artists' work - only vegetative life inhabits McCarthy's landscapes, while each of Awalt's figures stand alone - look for the two to come together at Muse.