Fall Exhibit/Dreamscape

Kathy Burge, Stephen King, Louise Laplante and Valerie Hammond

October 15, 2009 through November 22, 2009

6-8 pm. The exhibit focuses on ephemeral, dreamlike qualities found in each of the artists’ work.

Much of the enjoyment in viewing a painting or a sculpture comes from the viewer’s degree of empathy with the content of the work. In painting as in drama, how much we identify with the story or characters is determined by the artistic execution and expressive organization. In the case of the abstract art of Kathy Burge, the empathy we feel is physically palpable because we are invited to play along with the act of mark making. Burge’s gestural strokes create a dialogue between luscious shades of green, orange and yellow and lyrical notations of the heart. The work is both ephemeral and dynamic.

Burge received an MFA from Yale and has been exhibiting with Carrie Haddad since 2004. Her work has been placed in numerous private collections as well as the Philadelphia Stock Exchange and NASDAQ.

Drawings and encaustic paintings by Louise Laplante embrace simple themes like morning coffee, large feet, and Ginko leaves. Laplante paints multiple images of her subjects in bold black paint over delicate vintage letters. These works on vintage collaged paper tell a story of “ancestors” and “what once was” with relevance to the present. Also included in this exhibit will be a series of ten, small ex-voto like paintings portraying saintly characters. Laplante has been exhibiting her art since 1981. She lives and teaches art in the Berkshires. Louise Laplante’s work has been widely collected and is in the collection of Amherst College, Museum of Fine Arts. Springfield, MA

University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and SUNY Albany.

Beautifully constructed three dimensional dream reenactments are presented by Stephen King, who is graciously welcomed back to the gallery after a long hiatus. Influenced by both of his parents who were illustrators, cartoonists, and painter, King began building mixed media at the age of 16. He studied television production at S.F. State College and
advertising at the School of Visual Arts, New York City.
“All of the works for this exhibit,” reports King,” illustrate the search for and the facing down of my inner demons and thus finding my true self.” King’s work illustrates these discoveries in his work with the color gold, an egg or sphere to represent rebirth.

Like the American native Navajo weaver who would often weave a single red thread of yarn from the center of a rug to the outside edge to make it possible for the weaver’s spirit to be released, King uses red in his constructions to represent the release of his spirit. The red line for King often leads the way in and out of the core or sometimes acts as the barrier that must be broken to find the way to enlightenment.

Stephen King has spent 40 years on the creative side of advertising as an Art Director and
Creative Director. He lives in New York City and Claverack, New York with partner,
garden designer, Peter Bevacqua.

Finally, Valerie Hammond displays some remarkable prints of haunting and graceful dresses and hands inspired by the devotional qualities of shrines, ex-votos and Tibetan art. Some of her pieces are embellished with wax, beads and thread.

Valerie Hammond’s current works on paper and site-specific installation explore the emotional, physical, and psychological properties of gesture as essential qualities of portraiture. She conveys her subject's essence by focusing exclusively on hands – one of the most expressive parts of the body. She initially renders onto paper either the actual gesture of the sitter or the subject's recorded imprint, then submerges the drawing in wax, and continues applying further layers of imagery derived from organic materials such as ferns, vines, and twigs. In her highly tactile visual translations, textures and properties of chosen materials often take on human, physical attributes and at times, threads and beads directly sewn onto the surface heighten the corporeal effect of her patterning. The delicate pencil and gouache renderings of flowers drawn on tissue-thin, gampi paper that comprise the series, quietly emerge layer-by-layer as intricate mandalas and profound metaphors for the body's decay and healing processes.

Through Hammond's layering process, moments, memories, dreams, and references to the power of touch become profound psychological markers with which to convey both the physical and emotional connections she shares with her subjects.

Valerie Hammond was born in Santa Maria, California. She received her MFA from the University of California at Berkeley, where she was awarded the Eisner Award. Upon graduation she moved to New York City and subsequently, was appointed to her first teaching position through the Cleveland Institute of Art in Lacoste, France. She lived in France on and off for the next three years. Upon returning to New York, she began teaching inner city school children art part time through the Studio in a School program. Hammond has taught printmaking at Columbia University, New York University, the Yale Norfolk Program; drawing at Cooper Union School of Art, and has been a visiting art critic at RISD. Hammond lives and works in the Lower East Side of New York City with her husband and two children.

Carrie Haddad Gallery is located at 622 Warren Street in Hudson, NY. The gallery hours are Thursday through Monday from 11-5pm. You can call the gallery at (518) 828 1915 for directions or more information. Or, check the website at www.carriehaddadgallery.com.

Kathy Burge

Louise Laplante

Stephen King

Valerie Hammond