|The Endless Summer|
|May 12 - Sep 5, 2016|
In 1966 documentary film maker Bruce Brown followed two young surfers on film
in an around the world adventure in search of “the perfect wave.”
"It was an uncomplicated film, fresh and natural, designed only to please." - Roger Ebert, The New York Times.
Fischbach Gallery presents The Endless Summer, an online exhibition of paintings of summer 12 May through 31 August 2016.
Leigh Behnke: "Aftermath" was generated by the still life that appears in the middle of the painting, a post celebration tabletop after a festive lunch. The light falling on the table rakes the table at an angle, setting up a set of warm and cool shadows illuminating an otherwise mundane and commonly experienced scene, raising one’s awareness of the transcendence of the ordinary. The wine is almost gone, and the plates are empty. The party is over. It is late afternoon and the light reflects this.
Based on the inspiration of this light in this setting (a wedding lunch a late nineteenth century townhouse in Washington DC) I looked for images to reinforce this quality. I didn’t have to go far for the images on the left and right. They are of the garden house at Dumbarton Oaks, a magical Washington institution with an amazing garden I’ve spent many hours enjoying and painting. I chose these images both for their formal composition and for their strong sense of color shifts between warm and cool light. The architectural elements reinforce this quality in the central image, and also set a tone for an imagined setting that could duplicate my experience of the real one.
Once I had established the tone and setting for the still life by adding the adjacent images I felt that I wanted to place it in a larger, more sweeping implied environment. The images at the top and bottom are not from Washington, but they are of a similar historic era. Often in my work I try to imply an imagined parallel world by putting together images that have a commonality on a formal level. In this case the top panel is of a building in Victoria, a charming city of a similar era on Vancouver Island. The perspective and late afternoon cast shadows seemed a perfect foil to the middle panels. I was intrigued by the motif if the floating ellipses that occurred first in the still life in the glassware, and repeated itself in the hanging baskets seen from below.
All that was left was to find a bottom image that enhanced and supported these qualities. I chose a Butchart Garden image, which is another Vancouver Island location. The late afternoon sky at the top is reflected in the water, and the floating lily pads could continue the motif of the circular ellipses I describe in the central panel and in the hanging baskets.
Alice Dalton Brown: "Quiet Window" was developed from an actual moment in the home of a friend, when light fell on blowing curtains and into the room just as depicted. For the painting, existing storm windows and environment outside were omitted. Flowers add texture and their colors echo the warmth on the window sashes, wall, and floor. Creating a spacious exterior varied by layers of fabric through which it is seen was a challenge in this painting and addresses my ongoing interest in the effects of light
Nancy Hagin: "Double Damask" was a real summertime painting, begun in July and finished in August of 2011. The dominant colors of blue and white is a combination that has always seemed sparkling, fresh and summery to me. The setup began with the cloths. Both had woven designs that reversed color from one side to the other. That is a characteristic of damask, hence the title. I gathered many of my blue or blue and white objects and scattered them across the cloth. I added some summer tomatoes and cherries for their red accent. There’s also a bit of yellow on the small kick-toy in the wooden scoop on the lower right. The marbles were an important late addition. Cover them up and see how their absence changes the dynamics of the painting.
John Laub: From 1995-1998 John Laub spent several weeks during the summer in Martha's Vineyard, taking a break from his normal routine in Fire Island. Although he painted Menemsha and Gay Head, Laub's favorite spot on Martha's Vineyard was Quitsa. Several local residents befriended him as he painted along the road and invited him to paint in their homes and on their land; they, in turn, set him up with other locals to paint on their properties. In Quitsa, supporting the arts was a communal effort.
Anita Mazzucca: I live in Monmouth County, New Jersey where there are small farms next to shopping malls and housing developments. “Five Point Farms“ is one of those family farms that surprise and delight you when you come upon them. In the foreground, you see the, not too manicured, area for the horses. In the distance, you see the lush abundance of the summer season. Horse and produce farms are common here but I never cease to be taken by their absolute beauty.
Denise Mickilowski: My paintings usually revolve around a color theme. Often I get inspired when going to the markets and seeing their displays. In “3 Hydrangeas”, I kept a cooler palette. I feel having too many colors distract the viewer. Textures are very important in my work. “3 Hydrangeas” has an old worn wagon I used as shelving because I wanted the height to display my flowers.
Emma Tapley: Two summers ago after a month long zen retreat, I took up my camera and went for a walk with a dear friend. We had worked all month in the kitchen and were happy and exhausted. I had been taking pictures the summer before of grass with my iPhone but this summer it struck me that in fact it could make for a fascinating painting. It was perfect. The whole universe existed in this very simple cluster of grass. I had been working with the idea of trying to stop focusing on ponds. Up until that point I was primarily painting inversions or water reflections. When I went home I printed the photographs and was so excited. I began making drawings, then small paintings and then began this one.
Alexandra Tyng: I had just arrived on Indian Island, Maine in the morning to find the previous day's storm and fog being swept out to sea by a land breeze from the northwest. The whipping and flapping of the laundry on the clothesline evoked a thought of sailing in Penobscot Bay. I was seeing before me the kind of quintessential summer day--with its clear colors of white, blue green and gold--that I imagine all year, the kind of day that sustains me during the winter and makes me look forward to returning to Maine.
Jeffrey Vaughn: "Aspen Trees no. 15" is the most recent image of a series of paintings dating back to 1995. The white bark of the aspens and their black knots and scarring offer a striking contrast to the green colors of summer. I wanted to paint the trees with a luminous morning light that raked though the forest. The effects of light rather than rendering three-dimensional objects create the image. It also relies on the technology of the camera to create an illusion of depth through a softened background. The aspens seem to stand as guardians of the forest.