Denise Driscoll: Noticing

There is one more weekend to view Kay and Denise's spectacular show Conceal and Reveal. If you go on Sunday at 3:00 you can hear the artists talk about their work and ask them questions too! I asked Denise to share some of her thoughts about the early stages of her paintings, color and how she knows when a piece is done. You can read about her process below.

 Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: Underpainting

 Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: Underpainting

Most of my paintings have two stages, an under-painting developed by layering and color with overlapping shapes, and the dots, which usually float on the surface.  Sometimes dots are underneath, and sometimes there are no dots, but that is the basic pattern.

Building an under-painting takes time and each one is a process of discovery. I use a lot of transparent color and am often surprised by the colors that develop as layers of paint overlap. I take a lot of photos along the way, and sometimes wish I had stopped a day or two earlier. But this feels much like life, a certain beauty and balance are achieved that is momentary and breathtaking, only to be altered as new complexities arise. I think the important thing is to notice these moments, in painting and in life.

Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: Dots

Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: Dots

Once I begin adding dots, a new equilibrium is established. The dots, though very opaque, are small, and they become a semi-transparent veil that permits glimpses of what lies underneath.

Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: First dot layers

Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: First dot layers

Originally, I used these dots over grids of circles and squares, but have shifted to ovals that overlap more organically. I have also found my focus shifting from the shapes themselves to the spaces that lie between the shapes, and the way these nets of space overlap and intersect with each other. The paintings in my studio right now all focus on these tangled nets of interconnection. Back in 1988, right when I got married, I became fascinated with Celtic knots, but the paintings that grew from this attraction were very unsatisfying. Over time, the painting process has led me back to that idea and I am really enjoying the results this time around.

Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: Final dot layer

Inner Garden 29 work-in-progress: Final dot layer

I have been asked how I know when a painting is finished. I am happiest with a painting when I can sit and look at it for a long, long time, and when it keeps my eyes shifting amid tiny intricacies long enough to quiet my mind and calm the chatter that keeps my thoughts small and on the surface. I feel like a painting is successful when it becomes a point of arrival or departure, and helps me move into or out of my self.

Denise Driscoll, Inner Garden 29 (2017) , acrylic on panel, 48 x 36 in

Denise Driscoll, Inner Garden 29 (2017) , acrylic on panel, 48 x 36 in

Kay Hartung: Intuition and Evolution

This week is the opening reception for Conceal and Reveal in the main gallery, Friday July 7 from 5-8. The show features the work of core artists Denise Driscoll and Kay Hartung. Recently a gallery visitor made an observation about how well placed Kay's work was in our new space. She was right! The natural surfaces of exposed stone were the perfect complement to Kay's organic and structured surfaces. Kay shares a bit about her process below.

I work with microscopic imagery, creating colonies of cellular shapes that migrate, flow, and multiply. My process builds layer upon layer of biomorphic forms, suggesting growth, development, and movement. I reveal the beauty of this mysterious world, inviting the viewer to contemplate the impact these minute forms have on our lives.

Kay hartung Bio Layers 1

Kay hartung Bio Layers 1

With my interest in fibers and textiles I love color and pattern. I am inspired by the microscopic world and interested in the connections between science and art. In 2004, I saw an electron microscope photo of colon cancer. It was a beautiful image of this deadly disease. My mother died of colon cancer when I was 19. I felt compelled to draw it and worked in pastel. I started looking at more photos on the internet and in books and began the series I call BioVisions.

Kay Hartung Cell Migration 4

Kay Hartung Cell Migration 4

I work very intuitively and the paintings evolve as I go along. I often will conceal what I have painted and then reveal it again by scraping or torching.

July in the Gallery With Kay and Denise

"Conceal and Reveal" the gorgeous show that was unable to open in our Framingham location featuring Core artists Kay Hartung and Denise Driscoll finally opens to the public this week!! Come join them on Friday July 7 from 5-7 for the opening reception that corresponds with SOWA's first Friday. You can also hear more about ideas and process during the artists talk scheduled for Sunday July 30 at 3:00. This show features small and large scale paintings in Acrylic and Encaustic. In this body of work the artists use additive and subtractive processes to explore hidden worlds. 

Denise talks a little bit about the theme:

Kay and I are both working to make visible the things we can't see. In Kay's case, she uses microscopic cellular forms as springboards to develop incredible patterns of color and shape.

Kay Hartungs Cell Migration 4.

I'm trying to create visual representations of bountiful information settling into new relationships, also with patterns of color and shape. We both paint over our work and let earlier marks reappear through more recent layers. And we often destroy (or distress) new layers to bring previous information to light.

Visitors will find seas of color in this show, and lots and lots of opportunities to take a deep breath and fall into these energetic and meditative visual experiences.

Denise getting works on paper ready for Conceal and Reveal

Todd Bowser: Sound Serendipity

Guest artist Todd Bowser talks about the process of creating his sound piece The Dream House for Scarcely Awake the current exhibition in our large gallery below. He will be present in the gallery for a performance coinciding with artists talks on Saturday June 10 from 1-3.

This work comes from a process of prepared listening. I keep some kind of recording device on hand all of the time. Usually I have a stereo field recorder, but in a pinch, it may simply be an app on my phone. Over months of random audio capture using different portable devices, I developed a library of aural snapshots of spaces I was growing into - within a new home, traveling across a new city - both figuratively and literally in a new state. In the smartphone recordings, the quality takes on a severe unpredictability. At times, sounds distorted and degraded across media as I moved audio files across devices and formats in order to explore and work with them. As I have collected sounds on a mass scale, there are sounds that stick out as unrecognizable to me, but have still found their place within this whole. The time and place of these artifacts are effectively removed as dozens of sounds are assembled into this partly contrived and completely other experience, initially captured through serendipity, then guided into place by instinct and emotion and an embrace of unpredictable forms.

 The link below contains a sample of these basic recordings:

https://soundcloud.com/minorfires/sets/dream-house-raw-audio

Tatiana Flis: Documenting Process

The second of two artists featured in Fountain Street’s current exhibit, Scarcely Awake, is Tatiana Flis. Scarcely Awake is on view through Sunday, June 11th. There will be an artists talk and performance on Sunday June 10 from 1-3. Below Tatiana takes us through her studio journal and shares thoughts about her creative process.

This past year I started to keep a pocket journal when I would work in the studio. I require myself to write down a minimum of four observations. These observations include: the date, amount of time in the studio, what I am listening to, and usually some sort of commentary. Along with this journal I require one photo.

Journal Entries:

Image: Obsidian and (An)Obsidian Return (in progress)

Image: Obsidian and (An)Obsidian Return (in progress)

date: January 18, 2017
time in studio: 3 hours
listening to: The Dick Van Dyke Show (netflix)
observation: Richie is one annoying kid.
working on: Recreating the original drawing that inspired my house series. I would later go back and rework the original.

 

Image: ping! (in progress), my chucks, and an inspirational drop cloth

Image: ping! (in progress), my chucks, and an inspirational drop cloth

date: February 12, 2017
time in studio: 5 hours
listening to: Bowie, Prince, Primus, and Alice in Chains.
observation: That feeling when you like your drop cloth more than the work itself.
working on: “Clouds” or are they rocks…one of them could be a hat.

 

Image: quixotic (breaking out of its Alginate mold)

Image: quixotic (breaking out of its Alginate mold)

date: March 5, 2017
time in studio: 3 hours
listening to: Mike Doughty
working on: My sister is visiting for the weekend and is giving me a hand (oh boy) so we work on casts and documenting my process.
observation: There is just something about the process and what is discarded that I am drawn to… Need to figure out how to integrate discarded materials into finished works. Oh and my sister rocks.

 

Image: Apogee’s Horizon (in progress)

Image: Apogee’s Horizon (in progress)

date: April 25, 2017
time in studio: 12 hours (creative residency at Drop, Forge & Tool)
listening to: S-Town and Oregon’s Alternative Radio
working on: Drawings
observation: draw, draw, draw, draw...

Anita Loomis: Exploring the Poetry of Shape, Line and Color

We continue our series of blog posts to Introduce our new Core Artists. Anita Loomis talks about her inspiration and process below.

I am an artist who has changed gears…switched sides….migrated from one medium to another over time.  I am a contemporary, abstract painter of oil and watercolor paintings, living and working in Webster Mass.  Characteristic of my work are architectural and geometric shapes with personality; the incorporation of symbols; heavy, expressive line; and touches of gilding. I decided that I was an artist at age 13. 

Art has always been a serious endeavor for me, and I’ve been practicing for 40 years so far.  The impressionist painter Emily Boosahda was my art teacher throughout high school.  She was an incredible teacher and a very strong influence. My grandfather was a sign painter and gilder who also encouraged my early artistic interests.  Though I’ve enjoyed working with a variety of mediums, my initial focus beyond the basics was stained glass work; it is a fascinating medium. In 1989, I earned my BA in Studio Art from Framingham State College and opened a small glass studio offering custom designed window panels and lighting for residential projects.  From 1995-2003, I was very fortunate to be the assistant to glass designer James Piercey in Orlando, FL. The studio, J. Piercey Studios, specializes in the contemporary design, fabrication and installation of monumental stained glass windows, mosaics and custom art and furnishings, primarily for newly constructed churches, hospital chapels and other public spaces. During my time at J. Piercey Studios, I learned a great deal about the important role art plays in our environments and how integral it is to our living and work spaces. I learned a thing or two about art and design along the way as well.  It was a great privilege and rare opportunity to work with one of the top architectural glass studios in the world.  However, in 2004, I had a strong urge to pursue another path, and while earning an MA in Arts Management, I went back to the basics; drawing and painting.  I was very surprised at the change in my style; working in glass had greatly altered my perception of line, color and space. A line was no longer a mark on paper; it was a strip of metal to be molded in the hands: I don’t think of my paintings as flat.  

 Argument watercolor 42x65

 Argument watercolor 42x65

I have painted in oils and watercolor since that time and enjoy the freedom and spontaneity of expression.  I draw influence from many sources, artforms and painters. To name a few, Miro, Klee, and Mitchell.  Old fashioned cartoon animation is another inspiration.  I believe all forms of art are a worthy endeavor.  In a way, I think of it as a public service, and my goal is to create artwork that speaks on several levels; through paintings that are joyful, intriguing, and thought provoking.  Themes of my paintings vary. Communication and relationships are a frequent focus. Narrative compositions may tell a story about some aspect of work or family life; and sometimes the paintings are simply compositions that explore the poetry of shape, line and color.

Aqua Mesh detail . A series of paintings that center around the communication and relationship theme are the Mesh series of abstract oil paintings. Evolving from a fishers of men theme, the net serves as a symbol for relationships and the way communication lines and networks connect or break in our society, representative of the bonds we all share.

Aqua Mesh detail . A series of paintings that center around the communication and relationship theme are the Mesh series of abstract oil paintings. Evolving from a fishers of men theme, the net serves as a symbol for relationships and the way communication lines and networks connect or break in our society, representative of the bonds we all share.

Sarah Alexander Lets It Flow

Scarcely Awake features two of Fountain Streets core artists Sarah Alexander and Tatiana Flis. On Sunday May 21 there will be a poetic Interpretation event in the gallery from 1-3. Below Sarah talks about some of her work on exhibit.

Detail of Somewhere Else Instead by Sarah Alexander

Detail of Somewhere Else Instead by Sarah Alexander

During the process of making work for the exhibit, I drew everyday, for a minimum of three hours, and eventually the ideas began to flow, as though a door to my subconscious had been unlocked. I allowed myself the freedom to put it down onto paper, without overthinking it. Like recording a daydream, mining the subconscious , the imagination. 

This exhibit features an installation that focuses on these drawing sessions titled Brain.Storm. which simulates my creative process. The rest of the work in the exhibit all stems from these drawing sessions.  

Mia Cross: The Figure and Unlikely Materials Meet

While you may have seen her work earlier this year as a guest artist during her exhibition with Cory Munro Shea, we are so happy that Mia cross  has joined the FSFA Family as a core member! Below she tells us more about her concepts and process.

  I am 24 years old and currently live in Framingham, MA which is also where I grew up! I attended Boston University where I double majored in painting and sculpture and graduated in 2014. Although students were encouraged to pick one medium of focus, I found a love for sculpture, so I decided to pursue it alongside painting. While in school I studied fine art abroad in Venice, Italy for five months. The work of my professors has greatly influenced my work: Harold Reddicliffe, Richard Raiselis, Kitty Wales, Dana Clancy, Sachi Akiyama,and Batu Siharulidze to name a few. Some of my favorite artists are Euan Uglow, Kiki Smith, Alex Kanevsky, and Gustav Klimt. 

I have a few different things I’m currently focusing on. I’ve always been drawn to the figure, and skin in particular, so that’s been a feature of my painting for a long time. I love to examine color relationships, and lay down paint in pieces, as if I'm stitching together pieces of a quilt.  I also recently got back from a month-long residency at the Rocky Neck artist colony in Gloucester, MA—there I continued to expand my body of portraiture, but also began sculpting again after a year away from that medium. Sculpture allows me to use unlikely materials and depict the figure in other ways besides paint. Sometimes I’ll use found materials—for example, I scoured the seashore each day while in Gloucester, and built a life-size sculpture with the maritime treasures I found there! Other times I’ll use more traditional materials like fabric, paper, wire and the like! My pieces always lay emphasis on narrative, pattern, color, and form. 

Typically, I always begin my work with a clear concepts/idea, and usually with a reference photo. Although I have worked from live models, at this point in my career, photos that are not paid by the hour and that stay still are just as good. Concepts for paintings and sculptural pieces often start with a title or a phrase. I allow my pieces to evolve as I create with the original intent in mind. Some pieces are finished in two weeks, while others I’ll labor over, here and there, for months—usually the piece will tell me when it’s done. As an example; "Blue Baby" was complete within a couple of sessions, while "Fish Boy and the Case of the Roving Ear" kept bothering me, so a  year-and-a-half after it was declared 'done' I repainted a few things (the whole face!) and I’m much more satisfied now! That’s somewhat atypical, but I allow each piece to take on a life and process of its own. 

Keeping Up With Tracy Spadafora

 We will continue to update you about our new core members and established members work progress.  

I asked Tracy to share some of whats been going on with her in the studio recently.

My current focus in the studio is a continuation of my DNA and Evolve Series, which deal with the relationship of man and nature.

I haven’t had much time to work lately, having just moved my studio to  Framingham over the past couple months, but I am looking forward to exploring new formats and mixed media approaches to this work. 

Untitled (Reveal), 2017, Collage & transfer on wood, 14 x 11 x 2 inch framed.

Untitled (Reveal), 2017, Collage & transfer on wood, 14 x 11 x 2 inch framed.

I often find inspiration in nature.  I take lots of photos of nature and collect organic materials when I go for walks.  I am also effected by stories/events pertaining to science and the environment.  Information and thoughts about these topics often work their way into my work.

     My process is both planned and experimental.   I often have some idea about the images I will use and how I will layer them in the work, but if the piece is not speaking to me, or if something interesting happens along the way, I am always open to change.   I really never know what a piece is going to look like until it is finished.

Scarcely Awake

We are preparing to open in our New SOWA Location at 460c Harrison Ave this Friday!! Scarcely Awake, a show featuring core artists Sarah Alexander and Tatiana Flis will be on preview. There will be a First Friday reception on Friday May 5 from 5-9 and an artists reception and Sound piece by Todd Bowser on Sat May 13 from 5-7. Tatiana and Sarah talk about the theme of the show below.

Exhibition Postcard

Exhibition Postcard

During the process of planning our exhibition, we observed that even though our artwork is dissimilar, we are both inspired in part by elements of weightlessness.

The title of our exhibition “Scarcely Awake” is from the book “The little Prince” when the Rose addresses the Prince for the first time.

“Ah! I am scarcely awake. I beg that you will excuse me. My petals are still all disarranged…”

The concept of being scarcely awake speaks to both of our explorations within our studios practices.

Image: Detail of “Somewhere Else Instead” – Sarah Alexander

Image: Detail of “Somewhere Else Instead” – Sarah Alexander

Sarah’s Ideas of Exploration:

These days I’m thinking a lot about how the mind works, the concept of imagination, and the subconscious. In particular with this exhibition, I decided to explore more interactive ways of presenting my work. The goal is to invite the viewer into my maniacal process of creating.

Image: Detail of “Actuation Memories” – Tatiana Flis

Image: Detail of “Actuation Memories” – Tatiana Flis

Tatiana’s Ideas of Exploration:

This new series of work is designed to draw the viewer into other dimensions, exploring relationships between the human psyche, time and space. I have been playing with the concept of the landscape by combining micro and macro elements of the human body, nature and man-made structures. I view these landscapes as an intriguing game between what is real and what is an illusion.

Linda Brown: What it is and What Else it Is

 Fountain Street Fine Art Gallery is happy to Introduce our new core member Linda Brown. Linda shares some background, ideas and process below. You can see her work and all core members work in the members show "Yellow" in the new Gallery Space at 460C Harrison Ave in August!

I grew up in Hudson MA, graduated high school in 1967, married my high school sweetheart in 1971 and moved to Berkeley CA for a year, then Chicago IL for a year, then to Ann Arbor MI until my return to MA in 2013 after my retirement and the death of my husband. 

While in MI, I attended Eastern Michigan University and earned my Bachelor of Fine Art, concentrating in photography and anthropology.  I started my artwork in painting and drawing but soon began using my husband’s Nikon F camera.  I developed a love of black and white and of working in my dark room.   My main focus was images showing vulnerability and solitude.    I then began postgraduate work in photography, but I was working at a behavioral health organization at that time and a promotion was offered on the condition I take a few courses in public administration.  Those courses so excited me that I switched to the Public Administration Department and completed my MPA.   I was soon promoted to Chief Finance and Operations Officer.  All during this time, though, I continued photographing.  It was always my plan to return to photography when I retired.

My husband and I traveled often and I always had the camera around my neck.  Places we visited included Canada, Colorado, Grand Canyon, Charleston SC, the Outer Banks of NC, Little Saint Simon Island of GA, Savannah, Smokey Mountains TN, Ashville NC, and various places in ME, NH, VT, and MA.  Our trips always included oceans, mountains, and cities; and my photography reflects these fascinations—nature and street photography.  

I have two main areas of interest:  nature and street photography.  Regardless of the genre, my guiding principle is a statement from Minor White that we photograph what it is and what else it is.  Another guiding principle is to see the light and photograph what is in it.  

A major influence on my work with nature is from the impressionist painters, especially Monet and Renoir.   I am developing a style based on the interplay of light and the blurring of edges.  I am using various filters and brushes to create a painterly effect that elicits thoughts and memories.  I rely heavily on reflections and the glow of light on objects to produce an ethereal presence.

I am also working on a project of underwater art where the camera is pointed down toward the floor of a body of water.  It is looking underwater from above.   Light reflecting off the water creates a rhythm of patterns and things on the floor create abstract images.  This imagery reminds me of ancient cave drawings.   

Much of my street photography reflects my interest in glances, gestures, and interactions that reveal some human condition and provoke deep inner feelings.  Like my work in nature, I want the viewer to become an active participant in creating their own world of thoughts, memories, or fantasies.  I do not restrict my street photography to cities, though.   Anywhere people are is fodder for this body of work.

I usually shoot handheld, but at times I will use a tripod.  My equipment is Nikon:  the D700 camera;  my preferred lens is the 70-200 but also use 24-70, 16-35, and a 100 close up prime.  

I use three post-processing packages to create my photographs:  Lightroom CC, Photoshop CC, and NIK.  I will create what I call a “straight” photograph first—that is one that is adjusted by the usual darkroom techniques such as extending darks and lights, color corrections, cropping, etc.  I then work on a copy using various filters in NIK and Photoshop as well as Photoshop’s brushes to create the desired final image.  The final image may be a painterly application, a conversion to black and white, or both.

 

Exciting Transitions!

We were all so shocked and upset when we found out the news that the Bancroft building was going to be closed to all visitors! How in the world would FSFA survive?

Well in the course of the week the leadership team of Marie Craig, Cherie Clinton and Tatiana Flis were able to solve that problem. These strong leaders were able to find us a superb new location!

Our New Home!

Our New Home!

It is truly spectacular to think that within a month we will be opening our first exhibition Sarah Alexander and Tatiana Flis: Scarcely Awake in our new home  at 460 Harrison Ave in Boston's SOWA arts district!! Denise Driscoll and Kay Hartung will hang their show Conceal and Reveal that was supposed to open in April but couldn't due to the Bancroft building issues in the Month of July in our new location.

Exterior Windows in our New Home!

Exterior Windows in our New Home!

When I asked Marie how she was feeling about it all she said,  "We're really excited! Moving to SoWa is something we've been considering for a while, and the situation with our building gave us the push we needed to take the leap."

View from the Gallery Toward Harrison Ave.

View from the Gallery Toward Harrison Ave.

While the Bancroft building has been a great place for the Gallery to be born it is now time for it to continue to grow! 

SOWA here we come!

SOWA here we come!

April in the Gallery: Denise and Kay Explode with Color!

Conceal and Reveal a new show featuring Core artists Kay Hartung and Denise Driscoll opens this week in the large gallery. On Saturday April 8 there will be an artists talk at 4:00 pm immediately followed by the opening reception from 5-7. This show features small and large scale paintings in Acrylic and Encaustic. In this body of work the artists use additive and subtractive processes to explore hidden worlds. 

Denise talks a little bit about the theme:

Kay and I are both working to make visible the things we can't see. In Kay's case, she uses microscopic cellular forms as springboards to develop incredible patterns of color and shape.

Kay Hartungs Cell Migration 4.

Kay Hartungs Cell Migration 4.

I'm trying to create visual representations of bountiful information settling into new relationships, also with patterns of color and shape. We both paint over our work and let earlier marks reappear through more recent layers. And we often destroy (or distress) new layers to bring previous information to light.

Anyone who is tired of these gray New England days will find seas of color in this show, and lots and lots of opportunities to take a deep breath and fall into these energetic and meditative visual experiences.

Denise getting works on paper ready for Conceal and Reveal

Denise getting works on paper ready for Conceal and Reveal

 

 

Iris Osterman: Untouched Spaces

Core Artist Iris Osterman has her bold landscape abstractions on view in the Main Gallery till April 2nd.  I asked her to share a bit about her ideas and Process.

Current Ideas.....

With this series of paintings I referred back to many walks through rocky trails, wetlands, woods and relatively untouched conservation areas. The work is mostly dense and monochromatic, with a heavy graphic line.

Material and Process........

I will use any medium within arm’s length to achieve what I am trying to express, though I am smitten with oil paint. Drawing with charcoal and graphite, and encaustics often appear in my paintings as well. The work evolves with many create-and-destroy cycles.

Spotlight on Guest Artist Kathy Soles

This post focuses on Kathy Soles guest artist this Month in the Gallery show Place and Memory: Two Views. You can see her finished work along with the work of Core Artist Iris Osterman tonight at the opening reception from 5-7 and through April 2 in the gallery. 

Ideas....

  • Currently, my work is showing subtle changes, tighter spaces and abrupt junctions between marks, color, and new forms are emerging. All aspects of natural forms, real and imagined, are explored.  References are the sky and land – a departure from water.

  • I am still mining the experience of an artist residency in Provincetown (C-Scape Dune Shack) The dune forms became the waves

  • I was recently awarded an artist residency at the Cill Rialaig Project on the west coast of Ireland.  I suspect that the landscape of Bolus Head will present new ideas and forms.

 Material and Process...

  • Initially, my work is a direct response to place.  My paintings and drawings develop into a dialogue between dense accumulations of paint and drawing materials and open passages evoking light, air, and water. The accreted marks tell their own histories with a sense of urgency and vulnerability as they collide, dissipate, and reassemble. Layers of paint, applied with brushes and a brayer, expose and hide what is beneath the surface. Forms accentuate the surface only to be submerged.  I work on stretched canvas on board.  The rigid support allows for aggressive scraping and use of a brayer.  

Inspiration....

Over the last eight years, the ocean has been a reoccurring theme in my work. Water as a transitory form, both a source of life and destruction, and the meditative and metaphorical possibilities found in contemplation of the ocean/water are at the heart of this work. Ocean currents, navigation routes, the junction of land and sea, the vast expanse of sky in relation to the sea, and what exists below the surface continue to spark my exploration. Formally, these investigations feed my ongoing interest in contradictions and dualities. Artist residencies on Paros Island, Greece, the Millay Colony, and the Goetemann residency in Rocky Neck, Gloucester have provided not only respite from teaching and family responsibilities,  but have provided time for contemplation and the potential for new work.

I  tend work in series.  In the paintings and drawings, depth is plumbed in passages of water, air, and my interior landscape. Using the metaphorical implications of layering material, memory of place and experience is addressed.

Place and Memory: Two Views

The March show in our main gallery opens today March 9 and features core artist Iris Osterman and guest artist Kathy Soles. The show features paintings and works on paper. The opening reception will be March 18 from 5-7. I asked Iris and Kathy to describe the ideas being explored in this show.

Iris:  Both of us take our ideas from nature. In my case I work from photographs and drawings; these are used to jog my memory of places I’ve been. Bits and pieces of imagery are transformed in the studio. I intend to communicate an experience of a place. 

Iris Osterman: Sticks and stones

Iris Osterman: Sticks and stones

Kathy: Iris and I have known one another since the summer of 1977.  We met at Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture We share an interest in the landscape as a subject lived and imagined. Memory of places serves as a catalyst for our work.  Graciously, Iris asked that I exhibit with her at Fountain Street.  I am thrilled that we will be showing together.  I admire her work very much – the energy, mark, the metaphoric implications of nature

Kathy Soles: Small work in Process

Kathy Soles: Small work in Process

Joseph Fontinha: Why Painting and Why Now?

We continue to invite you to get to know our newest members. Joseph Fontinha tells a  bit about his background and what he is up to these days.

 I grew up in Brockton MA, got my BFA in painting from Mass Art, my Masters in Art Ed from BU, and my MFA in Visual Arts from Lesley (now LUCAD.) I teach drawing and painting at Stoughton High School, and spend my summers with my extended family that live in Nagano Japan. This annual trip has become a big part of my routine, artistically and otherwise, and I have been making this trip for about 11 years now. This 8 week cultural immersion has had a profound effect on my output and outlook as a visual artist.

Lately I have been expanding what I do from oil painting to some video and installation work that is all residual of painting, but I hope tells a broader story, and one that holds the viewers attention in a different way.

I have really been moving away from the commodification of my work, the making of objects for sale, to telling stories through processes, and then figuring out what is salvageable from the project that could be shared. Often there is a painting to show, but more often my work lately has moved away from this traditional idea of product. I have been busy working on animation that is derived from the painting process, and documenting/archiving the process of a painter.

I am trying hard to ask the viewer to join me while I convey real, and true human experience-what it looks like, and most importantly, what it is to live a coherent and linear existence, one that has a temporality that is sustained, and in full contrast to the immediacy and convenience of contemporary visual culture.

For several years, my primary concern was being able to isolate moments into traceable and immediately understandable paintings that again documented real experience but as a fragmented or instantaneous one. These were paintings that appeared as though they were a single stroke, but were the result of lots of planning, practice, and contemplation.

Of late, the number one question that I ask before I make anything is, why painting, and why now? What can I say with paint in 2017 that can only be said with paint? What is it about paint that keeps it (assuming it does) viable and effaceable as a means of cultural expression? I am currently working on what I am calling the “Blue Tarp Project.” It involves video, photography, animation, painting, drawing, looking, writing, and mostly thinking. How do I live with this thing, in what way could paint be crucial in recreating my personal story? How is this different from how we typically document experience, how we collect and organize imagery, or how we decide what is valuable? 

Marcia Wise: Nature and Inspiration from within

A native of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, I began painting lessons as a shy yet spirited child studying in Provincetown, Ma. with Henry Hensche as well as with visiting impressionist painters to his school. I received formal training at The Art Institute of Boston; L’Ecole Nationale Superieure Des Beaux Arts in Paris, France; and Boston University. Some teachers with whom I studied that influenced the development of my work in color and light were Lois Griffel at The Cape Cod School of Art, Wolf Kahn at the Santa Fe Institute of Fine Arts, Janet Fish in NYC, and Jason Berger at Art Institute of Boston.

 

 My current focus in my work is in a more abstract approach to the landscape.  I’ve always leaned toward the abstract and I've often gone back and forth working on a more representational painting while at the same time working on a more abstract composition. My jumping off point, for it did at first feel like a big leap for me, appeared after downsizing a huge property in Western Mass, and moving closer to Boston. It was an enormous shedding of what was outdated in our lives (me and my husband, Ed’s) and no longer served us as people, as a couple and as creatives (Ed is a professional pianist). It was a huge letting go that resulted in a relief I never expected… and also new found freedom. “Out with the old, in with the new” vibrant and alive feeling! Once resettled and back in the studio (I have a studio in my new home in Norfolk, MA), what changed for me is although I continue to respond to nature - woods, trees, canyons, sunset/rise, water, etc., - the greater part of my inspiration is coming from within me rather than only with what I am seeing outside of myself. My sight is sparked with a view or a tree or a color in the mountains, and then from within comes this enormous "pee my pants have to get it on the canvas" feeling that I have to get that initial emotion down as fast as I can - and in intense color. I’m loving this very much and I have no idea where it will bring me or how this work will develop in time, but I do know that it is a more honest view of my inner relationship to the world at large. The natural beauty of our world has always been my inspiration and it is beauty that I want to share through my passionate work with color.

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Color and Action With Sorin Bica

Fountain St Fine Art Gallery is happy to continue to introduce you to our new core members. This month we get to know Sorin Bica.

I was Born and raised in Bucharest, Romania. Started to draw and sculpt from early age, than got involved in clothing, shoes and jewelry design. During my early 20s, I also started drawing political cartoons, and painting more seriously. Moved to USA in 1988 and continued to search for my own style, which I developed few years later as a marriage between cartoons and painting. I've always liked the simple form of romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi's art and the "suffering" in bright color in Van Gogh's paintings or the evolution in Picasso's style and the "action" in Jackson Pollock's work, but a trip to Barcelona in 2003 made me see art differently.

I draw and paint every day, people and bits and pieces of my life, in lots of color and light. I see better large and XXL. I use Oil and oil based household paint on canvases that I build myself, occasionally I add mesh, sand and other materials. Lately I'm getting more involved in public art projects.

 

I don't follow a formula when I work, I just start with an idea, then somehow I get sucked in and wake up from the daze few hours later or when the reality knocks at the door or texts...