Unexpected Detours Create Openings in a Once Rigid Studio Practice

by Lynda Schlosberg

After my solo show The Conscious Web at Kingston this past February, my studio practice took a three-month hiatus as I tended to a family member’s medical emergency.  My life was put on hold for weeks and then months. While that was all happening, I also moved my studio, taking my time making improvements to the new space as I slowly moved in. Once the dust settled I quickly began preparing for my Project Space show.


Sometimes a break from the creative process is a good thing. But too long a break, and disruptive “life-related” detours, had my creative thinking—and process—in a bit of an upheaval, not to mention a brand-new workspace that I had to adjust to. Usually a studio change is not a big problem for me, but this new space (a nearly triple increase in size) demanded some physical and emotional adjustments. I needed to find a specific way back into my work, and to feel comfortable in this new space.

While I had been working the previous year and a half on the paintings for The Concsious Web, new ideas had been steadily floating around in my head. Some of these were strong enough to break through the clutter of the insanity of my life and I used that as a starting point. Often in my process I “test” patterns and colors before committing hours and hours of laborious mark-making only to find I made the wrong choice. I do this by painting on clear acetate on top of an existing painting. The little test sheets become a kind of work of their own. When I was developing Breeding Ground I made this test sheet:


I loved how the spaces between the dots made the “threads” in the work visible by the absence of marks. I wanted to try a whole painting with just the dots defining the threads to see what would happen. So that’s where I started. I also decided that the easiest way back into my work was dropping all color decisions and working only in black and white.

It started with these four pencil drawings. I was interested to see how the exact same composition of threads would look in a variety of presenting them, as solid lines (positive and negative), and as dots (both positive and negative):


These studies then led to a whole bunch of studies that I worked on for a couple of months. Working on paper mostly, and combinations of graphite and gouache. (and yes, a few color pieces thrown in)


By now it was July, and time to get serious on a big piece for my upcoming exhibit! I decided to take yet another new approach to my process and started with the inspiration of a satellite photograph of glaciers in Greenland. This generated a starting point with some very large shapes defining a lot of the composition.


It started here:


Over the next two months I slowly introduced all of the mark making I had been playing around with in this piece. Going slower than usual and being very careful and conscious of my decisions.


And ended up with this finished body of work (just in time) for my exhibit Interwoven.



Interwoven is on view in the Kingston Project Space through October 29, 2017. For more information visit: http://www.kingstongallery.com/exhibitions/2017/october-julie-graham-incidental-matters.php

Improbable combinations and Incidental Matters

by Jessica Burko


Upon entering the gallery space this month it is the quiet subtlety of the exhibition that first makes an impression. Incidental Matters is the latest body of work by Julie S Graham in which she portrays her reactions to the randomness of structures and histories that she sees impacting one another in time and space. These personal encounters reflect the arbitrary relationships between seemingly disparate forms and an echo of conversations between them can be heard as voices within the gallery walls. Graham finds inspiration for her work in industrial spaces where she contemplates marks on walls and details in the architecture often missed by the casual eye. It’s the minutiae in these spaces that speak to her of the past and the rich history of who and what came to pass.


The title of her exhibition Incidental Matters is meaningful in the understanding of her focus; what appears secondary and inconsequential becomes substantive and imbued with relational meaning. Each piece on view is a multi-layered painting transformed through its development; sanded, scraped, built and rebuilt. Of her work Graham explains, “I favor unusual color juxtapositions, materials that are used purely out of functional need and shapes that that are not intentionally designed, but rather appear from the history of their making.” It’s this organic process that fosters an exchange between canvasses, mimicking observed things connected at random in the world.


The center gallery of Graham’s exhibition is produced with a slightly separate approach. This grouping, presented in unexpected configurations of small works, is titled Remains. The canvasses in this adjacent space begin their lives from leftover paint and surplus materials from larger works. As Graham explains, “Each piece holds the histories of preceding works until it finally takes on a life, and reason, of its own.” With this statement she circles back to her original insight of seeing beneath the surface into the often hidden nature of change.

Incidental Matters is on view at Kingston Gallery through October 29, 2017. For more information visit: http://www.kingstongallery.com/exhibitions/2017/october-julie-graham-incidental-matters.php

Join us this weekend to view Julie S Graham’s evocative work while experiencing live music with Palaver Strings. Sunday, October 15, 1:30 – 3:30pm. This event is free and open to the public.

Thoughts on naming artwork

by Kathleen Gerdon Archer


Kathleen Gerdon Archer, A Single Picture Appeared, 34″ x 48”
2017, polypropylene print on Sintra

Gallery owners prefer that artists work have titles but deciding on one can be frustrating work for an artist.
My titles are sentence fragments taken from favorite books: those that perfectly explain in words what I am saying with my photography. It is amazing that writers, photographers and other creatives can portray the very same thoughts, as if of one mind, in such uniquely different media. 
My recent photographic series, Fare Well: The Art of Ending, employs a narrative structure with timelessness, geology, and personal family history at its core. My effort is to show the scope and immensity of one life.
To make my photographs I first build an ice sculpture filled with memorabilia pertaining to the person I am profiling. With each form I create, an individual life is celebrated in all its scope and importance.
Tinkers, the beautifully written Pulitzer Prize winning book by author Paul Harding became the source of the titles for my work of the last seven years. It is a huge story in a small volume. The Pulitzer board called the novel “a powerful celebration of life in which a New England father and son, through suffering and joy, transcend their imprisoning lives and offer new ways of perceiving the world and mortality.” 
The sentence fragments I choose as titles pair the author’s beautiful words with my abstract image, leaving room for the viewers interpretation.

Kathleen Gerdon Archer, Phantoms in a Silver Mist, 36 x 36”, 2017,
Polypropylene Print mounted on Sintra under Plexiglas


Kathleen Gerdon Archer, Sleep is Another World, 42 x 48”, 2017,
Polypropylene Print mounted on Sintra under Plexiglas


Kathleen Gerdon Archer, Not at Ease in this World, 45 x 48”, 2017,
Polypropylene Print mounted on Sintra under Plexiglas

The exhibition Fare Well: The Art of Ending is on view at Kingston Gallery through October 1, 2017.

Like a moth to a flame…

By Laurel McMechan

Our installation team curated the exhibition heated to unite the space through a system of chromatic hot spots. As you enter the gallery, the crisp lemon yellows, intense oranges and pinks connect across your view. Like a moth to a flame, Rachel Sevanich’s painting Circus Act I pulls you into the farthest gallery.


heated, Installation view. Photo by Tatiana Flis

The formal elements of line and pattern undergird the rambunctious color of the exhibition. Swirling lines from Rachel Thern’s paintings, the cast shadows of Rachel Mello’s wire drawings and stitched threads adorning On-Keong Syeong’s paintings echo the fragile stilted legs of Tatiana Flis’s delicate sculptures.

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Like a patch of shade to rest in, the middle and rear gallery spaces swim with earth tones, calmly smoldering like the intense red of fresh cherry juice staining your hands and the effervescent green of ripe watermelon rind. Nat Martin’s black and white photographs remind you of the inky void after the fire has gone out and winter’s chill before the spring blooms again.


Nat Martin, Landscape #3, archival inkjet print, 2017

heated is on view through August 27, with a Closing Reception from 12 – 3pm. Included in this exhibition are Kingston artists Jamie Bowman, Tatiana Flis, Jane Lincoln, Nat Martin, Laurel McMechan, Rachel Mello, On-Kyeong Seong, Rachel Sevanich, Rachel Thern, and Anne Sargent Walker.

‘heated’ brings the August heat

by, Jane Lincoln

The Kingston Gallery opening reception for heated was crowded and hot – most appropriate for the theme.

As a colorist, I focused on how to project the emotion of a hot summer day. In the painting August Heat, I explored how the intensity of a color accelerated the warmth and how the interaction between colors altered their strength.

August Heat

August Heat, acrylic on paper/hardboard, 24″ x 24″, 2017 (photo by Will Howcroft)

It was rewarding that so many viewers closely examined the structure of my paintings and questioned me about the material and my process. The works are hand painted collaged paper on ampersand hardboard. I paint BFK Rives paper with acrylic – the adjustment of each color being my primary focus. I paint the strips of paper in greater dimensions than I will use in the final painting so I can physically adjust the bands of color until they visually feel right. Some edges are cut so as to cast a shadow, others are painted.

August Heat tape

Painted BFK Rives papers

In August Heat, the thin blue strip near the bottom was my last decision – and I am pleased even blue reads warm. The painting stands out from the wall an inch so as to cast a colored shadow behind the work – the magenta from the surface moves around the edges and to the back. This warm glow is consistent with the title.

heated is on view through August 27, with a Closing Reception from 12 – 3pm. Included in this exhibition are Kingston artists Jamie Bowman, Tatiana Flis, Jane Lincoln, Nat Martin, Laurel McMechan, Rachel Mello, On-Kyeong Seong, Rachel Sevanich, Rachel Thern, and Anne Sargent Walker.

The art and the technique of Erica Licea-Kane in Over and Over


Erica Licea-Kane, Small Disruptions, 1, 2017, 12” in diameter, pen, burn tool

For my solo exhibition, Over and Over, now up at the Kingston Gallery, I wanted to push myself in ways that I hadn’t before. Aside from exploring large shaped works with the familiar extruded medium, I decided to produce a series of round drawings. These works, 12” in diameter, started with a series of pen line drawings that have decorative patterns based on and dependent upon the grid. The drawing component to these works took about 5 months of working in the evenings to create the repetitive fine lines. These drawings became a meditative task for me as I was not aware of the hours that passed as I worked.

I chose the round shape because I knew that I wanted to burn holes in the center openings. I also knew that I wanted to burn the surfaces as well…….I just wasn’t clear about how at the beginning of the process. As I started the burning process, I realized immediately that I wanted to create patterns on the surface knowing all along that my intention was to defy the preciousness of the original surface. The juxtaposition of both surfaces and their differences were always what I had imagined.


Erica Licea-Kane, Small Disruptions, 2, 2017, 12” in diameter, pen, burn tool

I discovered that using a metal shape guide helped me to create the layers that I wanted. I also learned other ways of shaping and covering with the burn tool that resulted in a sepia surface of many values. Ultimately, I realized that working this way was not that unlike my other work, as it also involves layers of repetition and embedded imagery that you discover upon close inspection.

– Erica Licea-Kane, July 2017

Join us for a closing reception for Over and Over, along with Drawings by Brian Littlefield, and E. Orleans by Joan Baldwin, on Sunday, July 30, 3-5pm.

All about E. Orleans by Joan Baldwin


“The space in Kingston Members’ Gallery is just the right size, where the viewer is in the middle of the terrariums which are on the walls and the installation, Too Many Babies which is all around the room. The viewer is surrounded by my impressions of the E. Orleans walking paths along Pleasant Bay. I’ve included the beauty of the area as well as the unfamiliarity and deterioration. While walking on the paths, it is routine that I come across dead and deteriorating animals, but it seems part of the reality of the marshes and natural. The paintings in the terrariums are preserved at a certain time in their existence but the cocoons and moths in the installation are more in the present, very much alive and growing, with life in the future. The mother moth in the installation, Too Many Babies can only watch as the babies are behaving instinctively, investigating and flying all over. There’s no use trying to keep them in line.


“The procedure of making the terrariums involved a series of steps. I painted the backgrounds with oil on Masonite and then incorporated found objects. The natural objects are from the area near the water at Pleasant Bay. In the installation I used fabrics as well as hair and hair accessories. The cocoon attached to the stick and some of the baby moths are moving with the air currents in the room, giving them a special effect. In order to put the show together, I relied on skills that I’ve used in the past, which are sewing, window display design and of course painting. I had to imagine how the entire show would look and feel when installed in the members’ gallery, since my studio is a much larger and different space.”

Joan Baldwin, July 2017

The exhibition E. Orleans is on view in the Kingston Members’ Gallery through July 30, 2017.