A Group Exhibition of Encaustic and Cold Wax Works
November 28 – December 16, 2017
Opening Reception: Thursday, November 30, 2017, 5:30-8:00 pm
548 West 28th Street, Chelsea Art District
New York City
By Carol Taylor-Kearney
A glow emanates from the doorway to Atlantic Gallery. The cause, of course, is the art work on display in a group exhibition by the International Encaustic Artists called Hopeful Darkness. Ingrid Dinter juried the exhibition that was conceived and organized by Melissa Rubin, a Vice-President to IEA. The IEA has chapters throughout the United States, (Mexico and Canada) and invited artists working in encaustic and cold wax techniques, whether members of the organization or not, to apply. The exhibition runs from November 28th through December 16th.
The theme “Hopeful Darkness” represents two notions: the seasonal shortening of daylight with its encroaching darkness and the political attitudes we do or need to encounter. Says Melissa Rubin, “Two states of being, with such opposite meanings, fit so beautifully together and can create a powerful statement: Hopeful, believing something good will happen…optimistic, promising; Darkness which is devoid of light, gloomy; secret. (These) works reflect and express the dichotomy of Hopeful Darkness.”
The theme would explain the many works based on black and white imagery or dark encroaching into areas of light. You might think that this would lead to an exhibition that feels heavy or dreary. But to the contrary, this exhibition is more like looking at a collection of jewels— lustrous and unique. The size of each art work is 18 inches or less on its longest side—so they feel personally handleable. The surfaces, though varied in texture from velvety smooth to mottled and scratchy, call for touching. And the arrangement of the art works around the space makes each piece discernable. There were 50 artists in this exhibition. The effect could have been crowded and overwhelming or worse, crowded and monotonous. But in arranging pieces in groupings of no more than three, I found myself concentrating on each group, then each individual piece then on the entire wall, then on the show as a whole. This was a message that these are all distinguishable voices in a choir.
Although it is impossible to pick out favorites—there are too many—I do want to point out some individuals that would exemplify the diversity of the art works presented. From a traditional standpoint of what can be done in encaustic medium there is Ann Breinig’s Coming Out of the Darkness, an encaustic on birch board that is one of the few figurative works presented. It uses large shapes of black and white to conjure a face “coming out of the darkness”. Deborah Peeples’s Buoyancy takes advantage of the layers, pliability, addition of pigment to the wax to form a work that brings to mind fog and rain, clouds of steam and water droplets, or the rolling surface of a pan of water at boiling. A piece that bridges to unusual treatment is Core by Amy Finder. It is one of many unframed works which works perfectly for paintings that exist as much as objects distinct from paintings. A round circle of marbled white paper sewn with black thread in concentric circles, it reminded me of a slice of wood by so thinly sliced as to be airy. Bent along a center axis, it waves to me from the wall. I could equally see this piece sitting on a pedestal as an animated sculpture. Susan Chilcote-Wade not only uses a variety of unexpected materials including a wooden pencil, snakeskin, rope and wire, but has a unique way of presenting her piece, Heart and Soul. Hung like a scroll or skin on a wood bar, it depicts an anatomical ink drawing of a human heart, a time piece, and a bird and angel. This appears to be a personal statement of rebirth. Otty Merrill’s Winged Messenger of Hope looks like a draped figure with claw like arms and hands, a black bird sitting on her shoulder. She may be an abstracted angel or a woman in movement from a war-torn situation. Made out of fiber clay, it was one of four pieces—including a lighted shadowbox by Jess Stone called Chasing Away the Darkness and Rebirth, a womb or flower shaped sculpture made up of encaustic, photograph, textile, colored pencil, thread, and powdered pigment.
The CT Chapter of the Surface Design Association
Curated by Nancy Moore
November 4, 2017 - January 7, 2018
Opening Reception Saturday, November 4, 5 to 8 pm
The Connecticut Chapter of the Surface Design Association presents an exhibition of the fine art of fiber, featuring over 40 artists from the tri-state area. Award-winning artist-curator Nancy Moore describes Unbound as "a celebration of what's possible when brilliant minds and creative hands combine to explore the limits of fiber in its many forms."
Among the stunning works on display will be unconventional basketry, hooked rugs, bead- and paper-weavings, felted wool vessels, traditional quilts, and unique sculptural pieces. The artists represented are members of the Surface Design Association, an international organization dedicated to sustaining traditional techniques in the textile arts as well as encouraging radical new ways of exploring the use of fiber in art.
Water, Water Everywhere
A Spectrum Gallery Exhibition -- August - October 2016
Published August 21, 2016
By Amy J. Barry - The New London Day
Water covers 70 percent of the globe and makes up just about the same percentage of our bodies.
So, when Barbara Nair, director of Spectrum Gallery in Centerbrook, put out a call for artists to submit work with a water theme, she anticipated many interpretations of such a big topic.
And she was thrilled with the response — not only the variety of water-related subjects, but of media and styles of work.
Titled “Water, Water Everywhere,” the show features 55 works in oil, acrylic, watercolor, encaustic, mixed media, photography and sculpture by 31 new and returning artists from New York City to Boston with the majority from Connecticut.
Pieces range from Ursula Coccomo of Colchester’s hyper-focused photograph “Reflecting on Nature,” featuring a glistening drop of water clinging to a brilliant pink bleeding heart flower, to Judith Meyers of Coventry’s action-packed oil on aluminum painting “High Brace,” an image of a kayaker riding a wave in tumultuous seas.
"Leisure Suits" by Margaret von Kleist Emond of New London (Courtesy Spectrum Gallery)
“I was looking for variety and a summer theme, and I knew a lot of artists who used water imagery; combined with that we live on the shoreline, (and) the idea for the show just came together,” Nair says.
Accomplished artists who approached the subject quite literally include Steven Cryan of Essex, a book illustrator known for his luminous realistic watercolors of boats and trains.
Among his paintings in the show is “The Susan Moran Tugboat,” watercolor on paper, in which the bright red tug is leaving New York Harbor, the Statue of Liberty fading into the background.
“Steve Cryan’s work is very detailed. He tells stories and does it with a passion and a lot of love,” Nair comments.
In Jay Babina of Branford’s realistic acrylic painting “Hammonasset Evening Glow,” Babina captures the subtle beauty of the Hammonasset River in the summer evening light reflecting off the water as dusk approaches.
“Forest Pool, Maine,” limited edition photograph by Sally Perreten of Old Saybrook. (Courtesy Spectrum Gallery)
Other artists’ subjects are also representational, but their medium and/or approach are less traditional. Examples include quilter Diane Cadrain of East Hartford’s richly textured mixed media water scene, “Lowtide First Encounter Beach II,” inktense pencil and acrylic on cotton.
A recently retired lawyer and writer specializing in employment law topics, Cadrian has been sewing her entire life, inspired by the natural world.
“Diane has been doing fiberwork for a long time,” Nair notes. “Lots of times quilters just quilt, but she does beading, felting, embroidery and also paints her work. It’s rather unusual.”
Combining her love of painting and sculpture, Margaret von Kleist Emond of New London takes a delightfully whimsical approach to beach scenes in three dimensions from an aerial perspective.
In “Leisure Suits” sunbathers are stretched out on towels as an airplane passes overhead and in “Avian Interests” the viewer gets a seagull’s eye view of the beach, including an abandoned bag of chips they’re targeting. Both are mixed media works implementing Balsa wood, acrylics, wire, wire mesh, paper mache, foam board, canvas and luan.
Elin Dolle of Deep River uses traditional black and white photography techniques to capture extraordinary scenes, such as “Getting My Ducks in a Row,” in which a dog swims up behind a group of unsuspecting white ducks, his intention ambiguous.
William Colrus of Guilford, a retired commercial artist turned fine art painter, takes a scene of sailboats being tossed around in turbulent seas in his oil painting “Watery Illusions” and softens and flattens it with the focus on energy, flow and color rather than a literal interpretation of his subject.
“The movement, the layering, the different colors. It’s just fantastic,” Nair says. “It has representational elements but leaves so much to the imagination.”
Working in the ancient, spiritual form of mandalas, Lauren Cryan — in a very different style from her husband Steven — created a piece titled “Mandala Waves,” watercolor on rag paper. Waves in blue, green and white form the center of the mandala, working their way out to the circumference of the circle, in a pleasing interconnected pattern.
Many non-representational works are also represented in the show expressing the colors, movement and moods of water in abstract shapes and symbols.
Among the highlights are “Wave,” Japanese paper collage on birch artboard by French-born artist Cécile Emond of New Hartford.
“She’s a favorite of mine,” Nair says. “She uses paint and paper to create this very delicate, beautiful collage work that really lets your imagination fly. You can see the three-dimensional element in her collages.”
Sea anemones are the only figurative elements in Victoria Sivigny's, of Meriden, mesmerizing abstract painting, “Sea Change No. 1,” encaustic mixed media, beeswax, oil pigment sticks, resin and silk organza. “Victoria retired a number of years ago from a career in mental health administration an followed her passion, which is art,” Nair says. “She experiments with a lot of different kinds of materials, including encaustic wax, ......it’s very soft looking, has a lot of movement, and because of the medium you can embed a lot of different symbols and imagery into it.”
Sally Perreten of Old Saybrook takes the realistic genre of photography and turns it into a color-drenched impressionistic painting (sans Photoshop) in “Forest Pool, Maine,” limited edition print.
“Sally is actually an accomplished harpist, (semi) retired,” Nair says. “She’s been doing photography all her life but is now truly showing it. This isn’t representational but you (recognize) the water. It has a Monet quality to it.”
There are too many wonderful works worthy of mention in this show to include here. You’ll have to see for yourself while the show is up for another three weeks at Spectrum Gallery.
The New London Day
A Spectrum Gallery Exhibit: March 25-May 15, 2016
Spectrum Gallery and Artisans Store presents Text Messages, March 25-May 15, 2016, an exhibit of regional and national artists who integrate text, foreign languages or calligraphy into their paintings, photographs, art books and mixed media collages to give deeper meaning to their work. Opening reception is at the Gallery, 61 Main Street, Centerbrook, CT on Friday, March 25 (6:30-9 pm). Exhibit special events include a Modern Pop Art Workshop on Sunday, April 24 (1-4pm) at the Gallery with New York artist Michael Albert. Participants create a pop art collage from various materials (Members and Donors free with a guest; $5 for non-members; drop-ins welcome.) On April 29, 2016 (6:30-8:30pm), Chloe Carlson and Bo Parish of GUSTO Dance Project will perform a free event of dance vignettes inspired by Text Messages and then invite audience input for the dancers to improvise movement to the visual art. Desserts and wine will be served.
Participants in Text Messages include painters and mixed media artists such as New York artist Glenn Fischer who works with vintage print materials including textbooks, album covers and magazines to construct geometric abstract collages. He extracts characters, text and illustrations from their original context recombining them to create new meaning by way of their interactions and interplay. Also from New York is artist Michael Albert (cited above) whose work has evolved from doodles and drawings to highly-detailed collages created from cereal boxes and other consumer brand packaging. NY monoprint artist, Aliza Tucker, through her vast variety of collaged imagery confronts issues of articulation, authorship, and codification created by our digital, networked society. Our colorful world is presented in new ways through the eyes of these adventurous artists!
Also exhibiting is award-winning Heidi Lewis Coleman, an abstract artist who explores the aesthetics of language in art as a visual design element. She combines her own invented languages, adding new characters and reconstructing the original text to create more complex and visually richer pieces. Artist Eva Dykas who works in oils, watercolor and ink is exhibiting “Kahlil’s Song,” a colorful collage inspired by the poem of Kahlil Gibran with the focus on our oneness with nature.
Kathleen Borkowski, a painter and calligraphic artist, draws from sources as diverse as Primo Levi, Mary Oliver, the Book of Job, and Sappho. She uses illuminated text integrated within her paintings to give her work the character of palimpsests. At times the calligraphy is rendered so abstractly, it becomes an energetic element in the composition. Maureen Squires, a painter and calligrapher living in the Washington D.C. area, is a student of Roman and other letter forms. She employs the words of writers and poets to express meaning via the appropriate alphabet in combination with color, illustration, or abstract gesture. Additional new artists to Spectrum Gallery are Meg Kennedy, a calligrapher and book artist, who works with the form and design of words and letters through style, color, shape, and size to create layers of meaning and rapport with her viewers, and Carol Dunn, a mixed media assemblage artist and watercolor artist Kelly McCarthy.
Charlotte Hedlund, a mixed media and book artist, is intrigued with how art connects us to both the old and the new. In Text Messages she presents The Sole Survivor series which incorporates collaged strips cut from an 1830’s New England Shoemaker’s journal (hence “sole” reference). Artist Kelly Taylor explores the line between realism and abstraction through the use of color, shape and elements found in nature. Painter Nan Runde returns to Spectrum presenting her dreamy images in egg tempera which increasingly incorporate text and letterforms influenced by ancient alphabets.
Photographers in the show include Derrick Burbul who explores our relationship to the environment through a wide range of processes such as pinhole photography, tintypes, digital manipulation with Photoshop, and the combination of historical and contemporary photographic processes. His current series, Diary of a Mad World, brings together images and words where they both compete and complement each other. Burbul is an Associate Professor at the University of Nebraska Department of Art and Art History.
Artists returning to Spectrum include Judith Barbour Osborne who creates works on paper that abstractly express the spirit of texts which she selects from poetry and spiritual writings. A major part of her process is “writing” abstractly the actual selected words, using a wide variety of mark-making instruments. Ashby Carlisle who selects alphabets and pictographs from different ancient cultures arranges and adheres letters and symbols on paper. Then dyed with luminous colors, they are combined with clay and metal to create sculptural landscapes. Amy Hannum, a versatile mixed media artist known for abstract imagery and use of vivid hues, is also exhibiting several of her intriguing pieces. Victoria Sivigny presents encaustic painted works combined with pigments, built up into multiple layers and fused with heat. Her kanji-like markings and symbols are created via wooden print-block impressions, stamps, and mark-making with ink. Also returning are Colleen Casner of East Haddam who shows one of her whimsical watercolors, and Regina Thomas who combines various painting mediums with textiles, old photographs, text and ephemera.
September 7, 2015
In Memoriam Abstract Art Show At ArtSpace
By Susan Dunne contact the reporter
Abstract artists show their stuff at Hartford ArtSpace
Late teacher Patricia Rosoff honored with art exhibit
For an artist, inspiration can come any time, anyplace. For Victoria Sivigny, it came in a used book store in Vermont.
"I found a 100-year-old copy of sheet music for Chopin's etudes," said Sivigny. "I tore out the pages for Etude Opus 25, No. 10 to use in my piece, a random choice." Sivigny layered cut-up pieces of that sheet music onto her acrylic painting, "Poet of the Piano," named after a nickname for Chopin. That piece is one of the artworks on exhibit in an exhibit of abstract work opening Saturday at ArtSpace in Hartford.
"Untitled AbEx 2015" is curated by Joe Nicorici. A portion of proceeds from all sales will be donated to the Patricia Rosoff Family Foundation: Keeping Art Alive, in honor of the Kingswood Oxford art teacher who died in 2014.
Sivigny's work is an abstracted vision, which suggests rather than shows a piano. She listened to the etude before creating it.
"I was inspired by the intensity, texture, energy and extremes in mood, almost on the edge of chaos, but still very much in control," she says. "This is similar to how I create my artwork. My creative process is often driven by a need to find balance between chance, control, chaos and authenticity."
Anita Balkun's inspiration also was musical. It came during a visit to her own basement, where her son, Steve, works as a luthier, making and repairing guitars. Anita Balkun always has her eyes open to random items to use in her art.
"He would have these piles of guitar strings in a garbage can or in a box," the artist says. "They are his cast-offs from building and repairing. They have a history, which is really cool."
She used the strings, and a discarded guitar neck, to create two wall sculptures of flowing, wirey lines.
"I wanted to use them the way you might draw with them. It was all about the direction of the line and the thickness of the line. They create a shape and a rhythm."
Art is a big part of Balkun's family. Work by her husband, also named Steve, is also in the show. Music is a big part, too. On Saturday, Sept. 12, the same day the show opens, her sons Steve and Nick will perform at the 2 Left Feet Blues Festival in Middlefield. With her son's stage persona in mind, Anita Balkun named her guitar-string pieces "The Songs in My Head."
"When Steven works in his shop he's usually pretty quiet. ... Onstage, he's a totally different person," she said. "I Imagine that when he is working and listening to his own music he's thinking about what else needs to be done with that music."
Balkun collects and squirrels away materials to use later in her works. So does Adam Viens. Like Balkun, he wants things that have a history that will inform the work. His "Untitled" mixed-media artwork uses evocative items to depict personal vulnerability.
The piece tells a story about a deteriorating relationship using the back of a foreclosure sign — "posing the question of existential displacement vs. domestic" — small pillow-like puffs of cloth decorated with keys and a graph depicting the couple's downward slide..
"With some distance these works may seem clean and quite formal, and then when examined they prove to be visceral and personal," Viens says. "The art world is increasingly more cold and detached, whereas the purpose of art is very personal and impassioned."
Other artists in the show include Kenneth Albert, Rishi A.G. Bhoodram, Rick Chozick, Christian Cruz, Jean Dalton, Sharon Dougherty, Paola Evangelista, Evan Fable, Yeny Flores, Lindsey W. Fyfe, Ana Lawler Gersten, Chris Goldbach, Danuta Gordon, Cecil Eci'Am Gresham, Adam Hewes, Monica Hewryk, Chelesea Jenkins, Edith Skiba LaMonica, Stephanie Lauretano, Diane Lemcoff, I.S. Levitz, Elizabeth McNally, Shirley Mae Neu, Joe Nicorici, Sofia Plater, Jeff Poole, Laura Viola Preciado, Carrie Simon, Kelly Taylor, Michele Tragakiss, John Tyner, Diane Ward, Sandy Welch and Julie Woolman.
UNTITLED: ABEX 2015 is at Hartford ArtSpace Gallery, 555 Asylum Ave., from Saturday, Sept. 12, with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m., until Sept. 27. Gallery hours are Thursday to Sunday 1 to 4 p.m. On Sept. 20, from 2 to 4 p.m., Michelle Tragakiss, Adam Viens, Edith Skiba LaMonica and Chelesea Jenkins will give a talk.
Copyright © 2015, Hartford Courant
Ashby Carlisle & Victoria Sivigny
On view from September 2-30, 2015
Ashby Carlisle of Old Lyme, a sculptor, and Victoria Sivigny of Meriden, an abstract painter, are award-winning artists exhibiting major bodies of work during the month of September in Maple and Main’s Stone Gallery in Chester, Connecticut. The works of each artist invite close, careful, deep seeing and reward the viewer’s energy and time.
The public is invited to attend the opening reception on Saturday, September 12, 5-8:00 p.m. with live music by The Jazz Circle. The exhibition is on view from September 2nd to the 30th. A closing reception will be held on Saturday, September 26th from 5:00 to 8:00 pm.
Sivigny works in acrylic paint on large canvases, often 36”x36” in a palette of neutral tones, and her mark-making varies from the extremely subtle to the grand gesture, from something so slight as to seem like a dried teardrop, to circles, grids, or pseudo grids, and other marks of time and wear. The artist prints, scratches, paints, stamps, embeds, collages, tears, etches, pours, rakes, drips, and throws to create her highly textured marks. There are, in some of Sivigny’s paintings, word-like inscriptions, either decorative script, or Cyrillic and Arabic-like letters, but the suggestion is that language is just one more graphic element, no more important than any other mark.
Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of encountering a Sivigny work, is alchemical: the whole is more mysterious than the sum of its parts. One senses an artist who begins in control and ends in abandon, having tossed-up the fundamental elements of art, then stepped back as they fell into place. Like an oxymoron, each of Sivigny’s paintings embodies an intriguing paradox: one is strangely familiar; another, naturally uncanny; or randomly ordered; or disparately harmonious. Through the combination of a muted palette, a seesawing of delicate and bold mark-making, patterns repeated with variations, as well as recurrent or unique gestures, Sivigny’s work is both aesthetically satisfying and intellectually challenging.
Ashby Carlisle is a sculptor whose foundational materials are fiber in the form of hand-dyed and printed paper, pages from books and magazines, metal and clay which she forms into wall sculptures contained in thin wooden boxes. Within these boxes she assembles tattered layers of papers limned with gold suggestive of sky, clouds, horizon and land. Where the horizon separates sky from ground, Carlisle has secured a clay plate through which twisty vines penetrate the lower and upper divisions: earth and sky. She uses the organic to suggest the supra-natural, and the natural to create objects that might be organic, but are not. At times in her work, Carlisle inscribes the marks of culture, specifically writing and other forms of symbolizing. Sometimes the lettering is superimposed on other lettering as if to say not only are land and sky entirely a cultural construct, they are a jumble, a cacophony of inscriptions, so over-written by “signs’ as to be imperceivable as they truly are. In several of Carlisle’s works, a representation of the natural world is completely written-over, seeing itself entirely codified. Such work acknowledges the inescapable distortion of culturally-inscribed perception.
Carlisle and Sivigny are both members of GalleryOne, a cooperative of mid-career artists who exhibit along the Connecticut shoreline, and each has exhibited work in numerous local, regional and national exhibitions. Among other opportunities, both artists have exhibited work at the John Slade Ely House Center for Contemporary Art in New Haven, Spectrum Gallery in Centerbrook, Guilford Art Center, Golden Thread Gallery in West Hartford, and the Valentine H. Zahn Community Gallery in Westbrook. Carlisle’s work has been on view in The Cooley, Sill House, and Studio 80 Sculpture Galleries in Old Lyme. Sivigny has also exhibited her work at The Slater Memorial Museum in Norwich, the New Britain Museum of American Art, and West Hartford’s Art League Saltbox and Clubhouse Galleries. Sivigny holds elected memberships with the New Haven Paint and Clay Club, West Hartford Art League, and Connecticut Women Artists. She was awarded second prize for “Temple of the Soul” at the New Britain Museum of Art Annual Members’ Exhibition. For additional information on the artists: www.victoriasivigny.com and www.ashbycarlisle.com
July 24 - September 13, 2015
Spectrum Gallery and Artisans Store of Centerbrook presents Collage – It’s an Adventure, July 24-September 13. The seven-week show displays mixed media works by tristate area artists in a variety of mediums including metal, paper, fabric, wood, acrylic, watercolor, gouache, colored pencil, photography and book design. The exhibit, located at 61 Main Street, Centerbrook, CT, includes an Open Reception on Friday, July 24 from 6:30-9 pm. “What’s exciting about this colorful and fun show is to see the variety of approaches to collage in the show. Collage is a broad heading, but can and does take many, many forms limited only by an artist’s imagination,” notes Barbara Nair, Director of Spectrum Gallery.
Artists participating in the show include artist, writer, illustrator and designer Jill Butler who presents four collage pieces of a series of 14 that incorporate paper, found objects, wood and newsprint. With materials gathered in Paris, Normandy and Connecticut, each collage is a story told through these elements and one’s imagination. An interesting use of text is seen in Heidi Lewis Coleman’s pieces which reflect her exploration of using language in art as a visual design element. Marco Gallotta, an Italian-born, New York City-based artist who works in the fashion industry presents several of his works consisting of paper-cutting techniques, drawing, painting, and printmaking.
Paul Zelanski, artist and Professor Emeritus from the University of Connecticut Art Department, who is showing several pieces calls collage a format that offers new life to things that have been discarded or given away, but are given meaning by the work at hand. Another artist with a similar approach is mixed media artist Kathy Johnson who creates art with recycled items she collects and found materials from daily life.
Other artists include Jean Swanson who presents vibrant acrylic painted paper works and through materials such as tree bark and twigs, fabric and string, demonstrates the variety of natural elements that can be incorporated into collage. Likewise, artists Jean Graustein highlights the beauty of the ginkgo leaf with ink leaf prints and rubber stamp prints, while artists Kelly Taylor and Diana Sartor use nature as inspiration for their mixed media pieces. Artist Diane Ward’s interest in the natural world is illustrated by her two seascapes created with acrylic paint and painted papers.
Artists who demonstrate the wide variety of mediums used in collage are Jill Vaughn, who incorporates watercolor, oil paint, pencil and photography into her work and Regina Thomas who combines different painting mediums with textiles, old photographs, text and ephemera. Artist Layne, whose pieces are less abstract, presents work with her signature use of shape, color, and strong compositions. Assemblage, a more sculptural form of collage, is evident in Frieda Howling’s work. Two of her pieces on display tell stories about Richard Nixon and Laurel and Hardy.
Artist Victoria Sivigny presents work created with the ancient process of Joomchi, a method of making textured and painted handmade paper. She fuses plant fibers in a felting and collage process to develop structures that may be delicate or leather-like with the forms finished with a layer of beeswax. Venezuelan-born artist and Corina Alvarezdelugo, who also often incorporates beeswax (via encaustic) into her work presents several mixed media pieces.
Pipe Dreams, copper, brass, sterling silver, and steel by Beverly Waters
And to keep things adventurous Beverly Waters creates large and small sculptural wall pieces using pipes, hinges and a variety of metals. Cecil Emond documents her travels to exotic locales through collage with photographs, ticket receipts, hand-written notes and product labels. Charlotte Hedlund, a painter and mixed media book artist explores the concept of connections and poetry in her exquisitely designed collage books.
Photographers include Kathryn Schaller whose love of animals – particularly dogs – is captured in several pieces, and Barbara Hanson whose work includes her photographic images combined with other mixed media elements to create compelling compositions.
In addition to the Gallery, Spectrum includes the Artisans Store which offers distinctive pottery, serving ware, home decor, jewelry and fine accessories. There are multiple fine artisans returning for this show with new ones including wood worker Steve Downs, felters Holly Bollier and Stephanie Jamieson, fabric artist Clara Nartey, and showing a variety of collaged framed mirrors is Lee Walthers.
GALLERY ONE ARTISTS
LA GRUA CENTER
Published January 06. 2015 4:00AM
AMY J. BARRY, SPECIAL TO THE NEW LONDON DAY
Publication: The Day
Gallery One lands in southeastern Connecticut today where the moveable art venue opens an exhibition at Stonington's La Grua Center, displaying the works of 10 member artists.
The cooperative gallery is unique in that it doesn't have its own physical space but exhibits four times a year in locations all along the Connecticut shoreline.
Gallery One operated out of a space in Old Saybrook for many years, but when the business that shared the space moved out, the artists couldn't afford the rent. In 2013, they started showing in a variety of locations, explains Judith Barbour Osborne, Gallery One director and member artist.
There are many benefits to being on the move, Barbour Osborne believes.
"One of the advantages of showing 'on the road' is that we can reach a larger audience - and also expose people to us as a group and to these extraordinary individual artists," she says. "The La Grua Center is the furthest east we have shown to date with New Haven being the furthest west."
Another advantage, she says, is artists don't have to gallery sit like they do in other cooperative galleries, freeing up more of their time to work in their studios.
"And, not having a monthly rent responsibility means financially we don't have to have 'X' amount of artists (to cover the cost)," she adds.
This way, the artists pay a reasonable membership fee for the year, and then all proceeds of sales go directly to the artists without a percentage going to a gallery, she notes.
Barbour Osborne is happy that Gallery One is exhibiting at the La Grua Center.
"I was introduced to Stonington years ago when I was developing an artist book I'd received a grant for," she recalls. "I fell in love with the town. I went to an exhibit at the La Grua Center. I think Stonington is very lucky to have it. They value art and it's a lovely space in a lovely building."
There are currently 11 Gallery One member artists working in a wide range of media and styles, from representational to abstract paintings, sculpture and works on paper.
"I think it's a special group of all mature artists, who have a lot of experience and very distinct voices," Barbour Osborne says. "These artists are all actively exhibiting in galleries and museums around the U.S. and beyond - they're not just getting started in their careers."
As a cooperative, members propose artists for the following year and it's a group decision whether to take on a new artist.
"When it's a right fit, it's a right fit," Barbour Osborne says.
Another unique aspect of being a cooperative gallery is the way a show is hung, she points out.
"It's a collaborative process, so there is a visual dialogue among the representational and abstract, the sculptural and two-dimensional works," Barbour Osborne says. "It's the same eye we bring to our work itself - and adds another layer for the viewer to see what's going on between the works in the show."
And, there's an educational aspect to the cooperative. Every six weeks the members gather to discuss art books, view art history videos and have had guest artists do demonstrations and introduce the group to websites and computer programs for artists.
"It's a social time for the artists as well as informative discussions that help the artists in their careers," Barbour Osborne points out.
ON EXHIBIT AT LA GRUA
David Brown of Old Saybrook: oil on panel
The artist lives on a small farm in a hay house and grows flowers and vegetables on his property. "His subjects are his surroundings," Barbour Osborne says. "He uses very expressive brush strokes and vibrant colors."
Ashby Carlisle of Old Lyme: mixed media and sculpture
"She lives right on a salt marsh and the skeletal structures of the plants have a deep resonance for her," Barbour Osborne observes. "She is also drawn to languages and paints on newspapers in four major languages to (express) universal messages and values."
Catherine Christiano of Old Lyme: oil on newspaper on panel
"Her work is highly representational; just beautiful and sensitive," Barbour Osborne says. "Yet she's not just representing what one sees, she's using medium to make a statement or give people more than the visual aesthetics."
Bette Ellsworth of Madison: gouache on paper
"Her work is also highly representational. She works primarily with the figure in charcoal and pastels. And her line is just gorgeous - very lively and expressive," Barbour Osborne comments.
Mary Fussell of Clinton: acrylic and mixed media
"Women are her subject matter, often interacting, dancing or in some expressive way," Barbour Osborne says. "Here it is not the brushwork that's expressive, but the figure itself, which she (captures) perfectly."
Gray Jacobik of Deep River: oil on linen
Barbour Osborne comments that Jacobik's piece, "Roses Not Fully Arranged," is "as good as anything you'd see in an art history book on all levels, all aspects of what she brings to it - the spaces, the air, is as important as the objects."
T.Willie Raney of Ivoryton: collagraph, ink and collage
The artist develops layered statements using mixed media with collagraphs (printmaking technique) as the basis. "It starts out being pleasing to look at, and as you spend time with it, more and more is revealed," Barbour Osborne says.
Victoria Sivigny of Meriden: mixed media on canvas
The newest Gallery One member, Sivigny is a Reiki master and is aware of bringing personal history and meaning into her art. Sealed with Tibetan symbols, she describes her work as "offering an alternative perception of the world through abstraction."
Jill Vaughn of Ivoryton: Oil and pencil and watercolor and pencil on paper
"She lives in the woods, and her subjects are trees and boulders," Barbour Osborne says. "She collages her materials and paints and draws on them. Her paintings are semi-abstract and often quite large and very dramatic."
Finally, Barbour Osborne's own work in the show is mixed media on paper that incorporates poetry and spiritual text. Her abstract pieces have been described as "subtly yet powerfully evocative of warmth and light, open space and motion."
The New London Day
By SUSAN DUNNE, firstname.lastname@example.org
July 9, 2014
Simsbury abstract artist Joe Nicorici wanted to curate an abstract exhibit, and in February, he signed up his first artist: Patricia Rosoff, his art teacher and mentor at Kingswood-Oxford School in West Hartford, where he was in the class of 1999.
Rosoff did not live to see the exhibit. She was killed in late March in an auto accident in West Hartford.
But the show must go on, and now it's dedicated to her. "Untitled: Abstract Exhibition," featuring work by 40 Connecticut abstract artists, opens Thursday, July 10, at ArtSpace in Hartford. "I was very much into impressionism through high school, but she tried to encourage me to go abstract," said Nicorici, who was born in Bucharest, Romania, and raised in Hartford. "I got to like it. I like the idea that it is limitless, creatively experimental, not constrained to one idea. In representational work you have to mimic an image. With abstract, you're painting ideas rather than images. You paint things you don't realize you were thinking about, they all just come out."
The exhibit features paintings, sculpture, photographs and installation work. Rosoff's widower, Neil, approved of four of Rosoff's works to be in the show. Other artists in the show are Kenneth Albert, Anita Balkun, Rishi A.G. Bhoodram, Ethan Boisvert. Vanessa Braucci, Rick Chozick, Jean Dalton, Nancy Doherty, Evan Fable, Yeny Flores, Carol Ganick, Peter Ganick, Ana Lawler Gersten, Danuta Gordon, Cecil Eci'Am Gresham, Kevin Hernandez, Adam Hewes, Monica Hewryk, Gray Jacobik, Gary Jacobs, Zachary Keeting, Edith Skiba LaMonica, Diana Lemcoff, Ilona S. Levitz, Yessenia Manrique, Sarah Merkel, Joe Nicorici, Sofia Plater, Laura Viola Preciado, Carolanne Pinto, Erin Scanlon, Victoria Sivigny, Kelly Taylor, John Tyner, Adam Viens, Diane Ward, Sandy Welch, Jason Werner and Gretchen Wohlgemuth.
UNTITLED: ABSTRACT EXHIBITION is at Hartford ArtSpace, 555 Asylum Ave., from July 10, when it opens with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. (suggested donation $5), until July 26. Gallery hours are Friday to Sunday 1 to 5 p.m. or by appointment. Half of the artists' entry fees, and a percentage of donations from the reception, will benefit the Greater Hartford Arts Council.