Gelfan paintings on display
A self-portrait by Carrie Gelfan that is part of her show at Main Street Arts.

Gelfan paintings on display

SAXTONS RIVER — The paintings of Carrie Gelfan of Westminster will be on display at Main Street Arts through June 28 in a show featuring her work from the past 10 years.

An opening reception will be held Thursday, May 23, from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

Gelfan describes her work as figurative, with many portraits and groupings of friends and family members, some from life and some from old photos.

“I paint because I like to create and make things,” she said in a news release. “I like painting people (and sometimes animals) because it allows me to create an intimacy with my subjects in a very safe way, one in which I am in control of the relationship.”

Drawing is an essential part of her work, and all her paintings are preceded by drawings. She is a member of two life drawing groups in the area, and many of her charcoal life drawings have become the basis of later paintings.

Although she often bases her paintings on photographs, Gelfan sometimes groups individual photo subjects to “create an interesting dynamic between figures, an essence or atmosphere, and also some mystery, intrigue, or even ambiguity about the situation or relationship.”

But Gelfan says the real subject of her paintings is the paint itself and the dance of painting, how the paint sits on the canvas, its consistency, the relationship of the colors, and the spontaneity and rhythm of the brush strokes and lines.

“The figures are mostly a vehicle for me to express myself with paint,” she says.

Gelfan holds a bachelor's degree in fine art from Antioch College and also studied at the Art Students League in New York and Cabrillo Junior College in California. She has been awarded two fellowships at the Vermont Studio Center's Vermont Week.

Her work has been shown in a number of galleries in Vermont and New Hampshire, and she is currently affiliated with the Oxbow Gallery in Northampton, Mass. Her paintings can be seen at her website,

For further information about the show, visit or Facebook, or call 802-869-2960.

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