2013 Summer Group Show
The exhibition comprises of the work of six regional painters; Peter Batchelder, Darthea Cross, Michele Kishita, Lorraine Lewin, Hannah Sessions and Karen Schmitz. These artists’ works are connected by a shared interest in color, impressions of the landscape and nature, and by a common appreciation for the elements of line and shape. While all six artists look to the landscape as their primary source of inspiration, each artist’s approach is unique, resulting in visually striking paintings that incorporate both contemporary approaches and traditional techniques in painting.
Michele Kishita responds to the wood grain of her painting surface and the depictions of Katsushika Hokusai’s waterfall prints. Her technical use of layered painting, collage and glimmering gold leaf application provide surprising juxtapositions. Like Hokusai’s prints, these works reference the beautiful fluidity and transformability of the landscape and how such precious gestures evoke an impermanence and transient nature of all things.
Darthea Cross’ paintings reflect her continued exploration of silence found within nature and how such moments connect to a deeper self-mediation of inner quietude. Responding to her direct observation from her own personal experiences of walking and hiking, Cross creates breathtaking views from mountain tops and valleys, using expressive shapes and line with subtle color shifts to suggest the inherent qualities of nature which become less tied to the specific, but rather to a universal experience. Her paintings serve as a reminder of the dualities between nature’s fragility and magnitude, and the power of each.
Peter Batchelder’s paintings embody the life that emanates from the time worn barns and structures found throughout the varied rural environments within New England. From the coastal landscapes of Massachusetts to the woods, mountains and farmlands of New Hampshire and Vermont, there is a rich light and spirit that is clearly apparent from each of these places being celebrated. This becomes visible through lively color combinations of vibrant yellows, violets and fiery oranges which make the viewer feel as if they could almost smell the coastal summer scents of sun bleached grass and ocean salt in the air.
Lorraine Lewin’s landscape paintings evoke the fleeting winds of change in the air, with an emotional sensibility and connection with each of her subjects. Swirling clouds above the dramatic water reflections beneath, feature her incessant search for personality and character within each of these places. Inspired by the beauty of nature that she discovers along the shores of Connecticut and the Island of Nantucket, Lewin is able to capture and relay to her viewers the unusual light conditions that can often go unseen.
The vibrancy in Hannah Sessions’ color palette is verbatim to the colors that surround her on a daily basis. Sessions’ rendering of luscious landscapes is a direct reflection of her time spent on a working landscape. As a Vermont goat dairy farmer who spends her days making artisanal goat cheese and caring for her livestock, she paints about the unique relationship that a farmer has with her land and community of animals. Her thick, juicy application of paint renders early morning or late day light with outwardly swaying trees and sweeping clouds, which almost pop from the canvas.
Karen Schmitz’s use of expressive brushwork and saturated color palettes excite the eye. Her unmistakable ability to create intense color relationships of shimmering light and dramatic shadows, transport the viewer directly to the scene. Her interpreted portrayals of New Hampshire marshes, shores of South Carolina and Costal Connecticut provide the viewer with provocative scenes filled with drama and delight.
Each of these eight artists’ fresh and vibrant paintings provide the perfect match to the summer season.