Is the summer heat getting you down? A great way to escape and calm down is to visit an air-conditioned gallery and immerse yourself in the art. Here’s a look at what some select local galleries are showcasing in August.
William Baczek Fine ArtsNorthampton – Works by more than 15 artists are on display this month, mainly oil and acrylic paintings, but also ceramic sculptures and abstract prints with hand-applied crystals, covering styles from realism to abstraction.
For example, “Divers XIV,” an oil and acrylic painting by Springfield artist Andrae Green, features a colorful, expressionist style drawn from European masters and Green’s childhood experience in Jamaica; He describes his artistic background as “a bit of Europe, a bit of Africa and a lot in between”.
Harold, the Faux Rabbit is one of several acrylic paintings on panels by Travis Louie, a Brooklyn, New York artist who specializes in oddball portraits referencing Victorian and Edwardian photographs, featuring odd beasts wearing formal outfits wear. In this case, the bunny has strange fur and shows a peace sign.
PULP galleryHolyoke – “Emergence: QT/BIPOC Aesthetic Abundance” is another group show featuring work from a number of Valley artists who, according to the exhibition notes, were invited “to decolonize and disrupt the notion of who has access to the art world, who is known becomes.”
“The theme of emergence is also a generative invitation to participate in, honor and nurture our own emerging processes of BIPOC creation and BIPOC community building,” read the exhibition notes.
The exhibition, which includes a variety of works, was organized by Chelvanaya Gabriel, an artist and activist who also oversees several Hampshire College Science departments. In addition, Gabriel also directs the Creative Resilience Project, an art/performance/dialogue community space for BIPOC creatives, located adjacent to the PULP Gallery.
Artists participating in Emergence include Ella Alkiewicz, Julissa Rodriguez, Ebbie Russell, Jason Montgomery, Keyona Jones/Onkey Cosplay and Erika Slocumb.
Gallery A3Amherst – After a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19, gallery A3 brought back its annual Juried Show this month, which will run through August 27. The work of around 41 selected artists will be on display from among 340 images, which were reviewed by the exhibition’s juror, Daniel Kojo Schrade, Professor of Art at Hampshire College.
The exhibition features a series of images. In her painting Connecticut River UFO, Anne LaPrade Seuthe created a semi-abstract green landscape of a body of water that mirrors the rounded shapes of nearby trees; A darker line in the background represents low, distant hills, while just above the water a series of strange, somewhat circular objects draw a line.
The stylized photo “Love Songs” by Rachel Cyrene Blackman, on the other hand, appears to be a close-up of a cassette tape, with a plastic spindle visible on the left and “90 min” written on the right.
Schrade, the juror for the exhibition, studied art in Germany and Spain and has shown his paintings and installations in Mexico, Germany, Poland and Indonesia, among other places.
Hope & Feathers framing and gallery, Amherst – Afterimage II, an exhibition of works by the late Greta Gundersen, has been extended from July to August. Gundersen, a painter and draftsman originally from New York City, moved to western Massachusetts in the 1990s. she died in 2017.
“Afterimage II” presents a selection of Gundersen’s graphite drawings that focus on identifiable single subjects—bats, nests, garlic bulbs—but which, as the exhibition notes state, “exist in a blurry borderline space, as if emerging from a dream. like visions. She has captured the essence of her subjects, giving us delicate images that feel like preserved dream visions before fading when you wake up.”
Oxbow galleryEasthampton – The Oxbow Galley is also presenting a group show “Black and White” in August, in which members of the collective contribute a variety of work that aims to explore “the implications and aesthetic possibilities” of artworks using only two primary colours.
To the rear of the gallery is Joan Dix Blair’s solo exhibition, Marking Time, consisting of color prints based on copperplate engravings, painted monotypes and woodcut monoprints.
There will be an opening reception for these two shows on Friday 5th August from 5pm to 8pm as part of the monthly Artswalk in Easthampton.
Elusia galleyEasthampton – An exhibition of work by area painters David Brewster, Laura Radwell and Marlene Rye continues this month, as does their unusual arrangement: each painting purchased can be taken home immediately, followed by another painting by the same artist positioned on the screen.
Brewster offers abstract exterior scenes that struggle to make sense of what he calls “an increasingly bizarre and incongruous synthetic landscape”: fast-food restaurants, malls, and “post-industrial debris.” Radwell, on the other hand, presents oil-based abstract landscapes in which light and color are prominent.
Rye, who works in oils and pastels and also makes giclee prints, brings a touch of impressionism and pointillism to her colorful landscapes, particularly inspired by the forests of western Massachusetts.
Nearby ECA Gallery in Easthampton, Pamela Acosta’s Fragmentos de un Naufragio (Fragments of a Shipwreck) exhibition, a collection of colorful paintings and illustrations, also continues from July; The show runs until August 25th.
Anchor House of ArtistsNorthampton – Anchor House promises ‘wild art’ for August from two new exhibitors to its space, Jules Jones and Dean Nimmer.
Jones, who studied art at Greenfield Community College and the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is a queer disabled artist who paints and makes works/drawings/collages on paper, according to her website. The artist uses a distinct layering process that “combines print media such as monotype, lithography, and silkscreens with portions of other paintings on paper, each adding a variety of textures to the paintings’ surface.”
These “mosaic-like pieces” are meant to “challenge the notion that painting and printmaking are separate artistic acts,” writes Jones.
Nimmer, Professor Emeritus of the Massachusetts College of Art and author of books on abstract art, is an abstract painter who has had over 200 exhibitions worldwide, according to Anchor House: “Currently he creates impressive art together with his alternative ego , Unique Frédérique. Formalism and intuition have never met so closely.”
Works by James Brown, John Landino and Charles Miller are also on display at Anchor House this month.