Artists offer their work for the holidays

Dianich Gallery hosts Rock River Artists’ holiday sale through Dec. 23

BRATTLEBORO — A group of 11 artists from the Newfane area have joined forces to offer a holiday shop at Catherine Dianich Gallery in Brattleboro.

On display and on sale are works by Kim Hartman Colligan, Ellen Darrow, Dan DeWalt, Richard Foye, Caryn King, Lauri Richardson, Georgie, Roger Sandes, Deidre Scherer, Christine Triebert, and Mary Welsh.

Colligan, of Newfane, creates prints that “involve creating a surface that becomes an environment.”

“As each piece evolves I begin making references to nature in some way---often very abstracted plant forms. Color and form become paramount to the success of the finished work,” she says on the group's website.

Ellen Darrow, of South Newfane, makes collages from “work that was done while my husband Dan Darrow was alive,” then torn and reassembled as “new images which reflected the life I was beginning to piece together from the fragments.”

Darrow's seasoned, unfired pottery shows figures , animals, faces, botanical images. “Many of the themes involve various myths, sagas, biblical themes playfully woven together. Foibles of friends and colleagues may also become mixed in, somewhat hidden through the ambiguous use of symbolic or mythic imagery,” she says.

Dan DeWalt, a fourth-generation cabinetmaker from South Newfane, offers original creations from “beautiful and unusual pieces of wood” that let “the shapes and quirks of the materials to guide the design process,” according to the website.

Richard Foye, a raku potter from South Newfane, employs “straw, pine cones, moose dung, and pine shavings to develop the various glaze effects you will find on these pots.”

“The Japanese word raku is loosely translated (by me) to indicate a hopeful expectation of an unknown and delightful outcome from my humble exertions,” he says. “Surprises do come, though not always delightful.”

Caryn King's oil and acrylic paintings focus on animals.

“I find my subjects close at hand, often visiting nearby farms to collect reference,” the South Newfane artist says. “One of my main concerns is conveying emotion. When painting animals I paint to convey the individuality and inner spirit of each of my subjects.”

Lauri Richardson, a graphic designer with degrees in biology, environmental science, and education, finds mosaic work a perfect metaphor for her varied background.

“With its ancient story and solid form, mosaic can perpetuate the illusion of permanence like no other art form,” the Williamsville artist says. “I play with this illusion, magnifying the hair-thin lines of ephemeral subjects - veins of a leaf or butterfly wings - then filling them with grout.”

Georgie, a plein air painter from South Newfane, describes her paintings as “deliberate.”

“They are a mosaic of complex color and shapes arranged on a canvas to create a visual expression of an inner landscape,” she says. “My art becomes what I see in nature.”

Roger Sandes creates paintings and prints with “symbols of life and fertility - icons that have been an integral part of art in all cultures since primitive times.”

“By balancing the simple and complex, I hope to create objects of contemplation that will attract the eye immediately and also reward subsequent examination with layers of meaning, with luminous color, with examples of human creativity, and with allusions to living well,” the Williamsville artist said.

Deirdre Scherer pioneered the figurative potential of her medium: thread on layered fabric. Her work, which has addressed the issues of aging and mortality by building a series of images based on elders and mentors in her community, has been exhibited at more than 160 venues nationally and internationally.

Christine Triebert, an award-winning photographer from South Newfane with more than 30 years of experience working in the traditional black-and-white darkroom, has incorporated digital printmaking technology into her work. She currently works in a unique cameraless process, exposing organic objects directly onto paper negatives in the darkroom.

Mary Welch's collages portray “depictions of what we all take for granted - houses, rooms and their contents. Viewing these scenes evokes memories and fantasies of what we know about houses and rooms, and these memories and fantasies become incorporated in our experience of the work,” she said.

“Some things are exactly what they appear to be, some things are not,” said Welch, of Williamsville.

King said that visitors might be surprised at the variety of media and the price range available, from $5 notecards to original paintings at $150 and up.

“Although our area is considered to be a flourishing art community, I think folks might not realize how many full-time artists and shops in southern Vermont are trying to offer unique and original art that is affordable (while trying to make a living),” she said.

The gallery is at 139 Main St., at the rear of the Hooker-Dunham building. It will be open Fridays through Sundays through Friday, Dec. 23.

For more information, contact Roger Sandes at 802-348-7865 or Chris Triebert at 802-348-7440.

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