Greetings From Kingston Gallery!

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Image:  Jamie Bowman, “Stacey”, Oil on canvas, 3×3 inches, 2013

Free Association 2013, Kingston Gallery Associates’ fourth annual exhibition is up for another week, until August 29, and ends our summer season.  The viewer is greeted (that was me this afternoon) with an enticing breadth of variations – medium, size, scale, and especially process.  This free association, where one thought leads to the next, is the thread that holds the show together so well.

Here is my snapshot of just a few of the artists, which demonstrate this wide and Interesting variety, followed by a full description of all the artists:

The tiny black frames of Jamie Bowman’s tiny oil portraits both unify the group and set them apart from each other. David Kinsey’s work on paper is a frenetic assemblage of white lines, describing an imagined space. Peggy McClure’s abstract digital images of deteriorating surfaces of walls pull us in, reminiscent of Aaron Siskind’s photographs of similar subject matter. The vibrant encaustic paintings of Jeanne Griffin are both pattern and landscape simultaneously. In Erica Licea-Kane’s mixed media work, the surface is like a variegated skin undulating across the multiple layers of the support.

The Kingston Gallery Associates:

Rebecca Arnoldi creates ecological mixed media art that explores the visual language, essence, and life energy of natural forms and the relationship between body and earth. Her materials include second-hand cloth, plant pigments, beachcombed rope, algae, and burnt wood from the beach. Her work has been published in The Boston Globe, Brookline Magazine, and Provincetown Banner. Arnoldi has shown work in galleries and museums in Boston, Provincetown, New York City and Israel.

Jamie Bowman’s current work centers on small-scale portraits and still lifes in oil.  She earned her BFA from SUNY Plattsburgh and her MFA in painting from UNH.  Most recently, her work has been exhibited at St. John’s College, Annapolis, MD and Bowery Gallery, NY. Bowman was recently awarded a residency by the Heliker-LaHotan Foundation.

Erika Carpenter has a deep interest in exploring the landscape of outer space and its celestial objects.  She favors oil painting as her medium for its richness and luster of texture, and brilliance of color.  She also enjoys working in graphic arts and sculpture.  She earned her BFA from Tufts University and her MFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Jeanne Griffin says that her travels always inspire her. In her newest encaustic paintings, she draws from a recent trip to Nepal and Bhutan. In some of the resulting paintings, these visual images are transformed into abstract landscapes. In others, the artist has expanded on imagery of flowers and plants native to these countries.  Griffin earned her BFA from Tufts University and a diploma from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Her work has been exhibited widely, including the Worcester Art Museum, MA, Art Complex Museum, MA, Longmont Museum, CO, and Mesa Museum of Contemporary Art, AZ.

Chantal Hardy is a 2-D visual artist working in oil, pen and ink, and gouache.   She enjoys the physicality of painting and drawing and is often seduced by color.  Her work builds organically from the act of mark making. Her nascent series, Transmission, explores communication (both literal and figurative) within a twilight netherworld. Applying velvety gouaches to handmade Japanese paper, she punctuates earth-toned passages with fluorescent, figural line work. Chantal received her BA from Oberlin College and is currently pursuing an MAT in Art Education at Tufts University.

David Kinsey‘s current work has been focused on a series of drawings, which use an abstract language and notions of aesthetics, dichotomies, the physical versus the ethereal, internal versus external. Embedded in abstract forms, using archival ink pens and paper, he finds a level of sensitivity and fluidity in mark and expression. David received his BFA from Ringling College of Art and Design and his MFA from Yale University. He currently is an Assistant Professor at Stonehill College. He has received various awards including a George and Helen Segal Grant, Hermitage Artist Residency Fellowship, and Artist of Distinction Award in the Still Point Arts Quarterly Publication.

Erica Licea-Kane has been a working artist for the past 33 years. Her work celebrates decoration, and also represents the meditative qualities of working in layers and the numerous hours of repetitive actions, akin to her textile training.  Emotionally, and most importantly, the work addresses the juxtaposition of her personal challenges in dealing with order/non-order and balance, co-existing in a shared space or time. Currently she is an Assistant Professor and the Director of the Towne Art Gallery at Wheelock College. Licea-Kane received her BFA at the Parsons School of Design and her MFA at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design.  Both degrees were based in the area of textiles as a fine art medium.

Robert Maloney’s work straddles the line between structures being torn down and those being erected, as well as the elements of modern life that go unnoticed. He is fascinated by the many layers and elements in the urban landscape which are inevitable and out of our control. Everything from our physical surroundings to our human relationships evolve and expand, then decline and deteriorate, only to leave a trace of these memories, scars of their previous existence. Maloney earned a BFA in Illustration from Massachusetts College of Art and Design and is currently enrolled in a Summer Low-Residency MFA program there. He has shown in numerous galleries in the Boston area including the Mercury Gallery, C. Duell Arts, 13 Forrest Gallery, Sunne Savage Gallery and the Copley Society of Art. Robert’s work is in the collection of Wellington Management, Liberty Mutual and other private collections. Since 2007 he has been an Adjunct Instructor/Assistant Professor in Illustration at MassArt.

Peggy McClure is a photographer who examines concepts of permanence and impermanence.  In her latest work, she photographs walls of crumbling plaster, sometimes punctuated with tiny, randomly placed bits of plastic in the crevices.  A mark-maker, she was first attracted by the beauty in the deterioration, seeing the walls as canvases drawn with graphic lines, loops, and patches of color. McClure studied at Massachusetts College of Art and Design, School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and New England School of Photography.  She has taught photography at the Danforth Art Museum and School. Her work has been exhibited throughout Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.

Rachel Thern focuses on curved lines. The paintings are a visual exploration of these forms through their repetition and interaction. The artist is drawn to them, as they feel like intuitive gestures. She also incorporates mathematical curves, as reflected in natural phenomena and living organisms. Using ink applied to wet paper with brushes and eyedroppers, she creates a large grid making up a pattern reminiscent of the movement of water or a cosmic event. Thern studied at the Maryland Institute College of Art and completed a BFA at SUNY Buffalo, where she also received a BA in Psychology and an MA in Library and Information Science.

August in the City

What a delight to see the new work from the Kingston Gallery Associates, a group of ten artists, juried by the membership to expand the Gallery’s contact with artists and to encourage new art. This is their fourth annual summer exhibit Free Association 2013 at the Kingston Gallery.

The title is apt, as the group embodies a wide range of ideas, processes and materials.  The work, elegantly hung in the space, ranges from figurative and figuration to abstraction, and constructed/ assemblage.

This Sunday, August 11, there will be Artist Talk in the gallery, from 1 – 3 p.m.; the artists will discuss their individual work and the exhibit as a whole. Please join us for the upcoming event!

ImageSome of the artists at the opening, left to right: Rachel Thern, Jeanne Griffin, Bob Maloney, Peggy McClure, in front of work by Rachel Thern, Friday August 2

Summer begins and last week of current exhibit ending June 30…

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Image: Sharon Pierce, Untitled, Mixed media, 3×6 inches, 2012

On a very warm Tuesday as I was visiting the Kingston Gallery, my thoughts turned to summer.  They drifted to swimming and coolness and letting go. One often seeks the experience of looking at art as a way of being transported to another space, of transcending even for a moment one’s actual location.  And so it is with the   work as the three artists currently showing in the gallery. They too seek that state, each in her own way: Sharon Pierce’s Clearly, Jeanne Griffin’s Impressions, and Joan Baldwin’s The Marshes.

Upon visiting the two current exhibits at Kingston Gallery, Sharon Pierce: Clearly… and Jeanne Griffin: Impressions, discovering the vernacular of each.

In Sharon Pierce’s work there are hundreds of tiny, tiny figures and objects suspended in acrylic gel and held in suspense forever.  I am reminded in a strange way of the ruins of Pompeii; this is a miniaturized and plasticized version of a culture arrested in motion. The work is funny, alluding to our obsession with consuming products, many of which are packaged in the very same things we see here in a gallery context.  This work mimics us and mocks us. It also reminds me of the work of artist Charles LeDray, but the inverse.  He actually fabricates the small world he invents and everything in it.  Pierce fabricates nothing – which is part of the point of the work.

We see into and through these objects – molds, cones, salt and pepper shakers, hanging drops, bags and test tubes. Here’s what we see inside – a world populated with men and women on cell phones, tiny and larger babies, animals, fish, divers, swimmers, boats, men working, various kinds of food like cupcakes, and the Pope. They are all isolated, mute, inhabitants of a terrible dystopian world.  Yet from a distance you cannot see any of this – the objects are shiny and reflective, casting shadows on the wall, lovely abstractions.

Jeanne Griffin’s small paintings also evoke another world, their colors from an exotic landscape. She is inspired by her travels to Nepal and Bhutan, and uses Indonesian tjaps in making her work. Griffin uses this tool, which is typically used in batik fabric printing, to burn patterns into her encaustic paintings.  Additional techniques involve inscribing into or painting over parts of the original image. The paintings are an equivalence of landscape, pattern, and cloth.  One imagines seeing the landscape from above, a hyper-saturated palette not of this locale, each one an isolated moment and memory.  The artist exists outside the cultures she is attracted to,creating her own language of form and content, to visualize and make manifest for the viewer what she remembers.