ARC Fine Art is pleased to announce the upcoming exhibition "Eyes of the East End", featuring the work of sixteen artists who either live and work in the East End of Long Island or have strong ties to the area. The exhibition, comprised of paintings, photographs, drawings, and sculpture, will be on view from March 31st through May 1st with an opening reception with several of the artists on Friday, March 31st from 6 to 8pm. The gallery, located at 3113 Bronson Road in Fairfield, Connecticut is open by appointment only but will also be open on Saturday and Sunday, April 1st and 2nd from 10am to 4pm.
The East End of Long Island refers to the five townships located at the eastern end of New York's Suffolk County, namely Southampton, East Hampton, Riverhead, Southold and Shelter Island. Since the third quarter of the 19th century, artists have flocked to this narrow strip of farmland situated between the Peconic Bay to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the south. In the 1880s Thomas Moran, best known for his majestic depictions of the Grand Canyon, made East Hampton his summer home, while plein-air painter William Merritt Chase popularized the region when he established the Shinnecock Summer School of Art in 1891. The 1910s through the 1930s continued to draw a steady stream of artists, all of who found inspiration in the raw beauty and exceptional qualities of light that still beckon artists. Perhaps more than any other artists before or since them, Abstract Expressionists Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning have become synonymous with the area and continue to inspire today's artists.
Over the last decade, ARC Fine Art has developed ties to many contemporary East End artists, all of who are contributing to the region's rich artistic heritage. Photographers Andrew Blauschild, Philippe Cheng, Laurie Lambrecht, Christine Matthåi, Geoff Reinhard and Joni Sternbach offer varying viewpoints of the East End. Some, like Blauschild, Reinhard, and Sternbach focus on the people, their places, and their pastimes, while others like Cheng and Matthåi interpret the landscape through an abstracted lens, offering an evocative and more suggestive view of nature. Geoff Reinhard's clever images of a Sagaponack barn at night and a roadside smile offer glimpses into the variable landscapes of the East End. Blauschild's series of silhouetted surfboards, he calls Ghost Boards, and his images of Ditch Plains in Montauk capture an essence of the local passion for surfing. Joni Sternbach's pursuit to capture the sport of surfing and its practitioners through the early photographic process of tintype has resulted in extraordinary images and a recent monograph titled "Surf Site Tin Type". Phillipe Cheng's poetic evocations of the East End, all shot in a square format, are the subject of a new Jovis publication titled "Still". Shelter Island Matthåi offers insight into her spiritual journey in her recent series of photographic mandalas entitled "Sacred Path". Bridgehampton native, Laurie Lambrecht spent three years working as an assistant in Roy Lichtenstein's studio during the early 1990s, which afforded her the rare opportunity to shoot Lichtenstein in the act of creating. The resulting photographs, which "have an uncanny resemblance to the paintings," are the subject of the 2011 publication "Roy Lichtenstein in his Studio."
Painters Perry Burns, Idoline Duke, Caio Fonseca and Kathryn Lynch all draw inspiration from the compelling atmosphere of the East End. For some artists like Burns and Fonseca, the East End feeds their creativity in a more subliminal way, rarely detected in their abstract canvases, which delight with abstract patterning and lyrical form. In contrast, artists Duke and Lynch reveal their fascination with the land and sea in a more discernable and deliberate manner. Duke's abstract watercolors, fluidly painted in a lively palette, suggest her love of nature, while Lynch's images of Shelter Island offer a simplified view of the island, painted in a naïve style reminiscent of Milton Avery and Albert Pinkham Ryder.
In two large-scale canvases in hues of blue, artist Bastienne Schmidt fuses a myriad of influences from the changing landscapes of her childhood in Italy and Greece to those of her bucolic surroundings in Bridgehampton. Mixed-media artist Jane Parkes reveals her lifelong affinity for the area in her brilliant collages of found driftwood. Legendary Montauk surfer Tony Caramanico captures the surf culture in his vibrant and entertaining diary pages, transferred into prints and canvas prints. Representing a new generation of East End artists aware of the precarious position of the East End, Scott Bluedorn distills the natural beauty of the East End in his masterful ink drawings of Gardiner's Island.
In addition to the exhibited photographs, paintings, drawings, and prints, several examples of two East Hampton sculptors provide an added element to the array of works on view. In her recent series of stoneware cubes, all of earthen colors, Toni Ross explores the relationship between the temporal and timeless, an ever-present concern in the strained environment of the East End. And, in a series of biomorphic tabletop sculptures of bronze, Lucite and wood, Mia Fonssagrives-Solow, who hails from a long line of French sculptors and was also the stepdaughter of Irving Penn, offers an amusing play of shape, color and form.
"Eyes of the East End" illustrates the range of art currently practiced in this thriving community, whose artistic roots date back to the mid-19th century. The exhibition will be on view until May 1, 2017. There will be additional artist events during the show, to be announced soon. For further information or to make an appointment, please contact Adrienne Ruger Conzelman at 203 895 9595 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Gallery website is arcfineartllc.com.