Opening Thursday– “Four Views”

July 22, 2010

One of the Reference Photos for "Four Views"

Two new exhibits open tonight, July 22nd, at the West End Gallery.  In the Main Gallery is New Days from GC Myers, a group of  new work in his 10th annual show here.  In the Upstairs Gallery, an exhibit also opens called Four Views which features four of the most popular gallery artists- Tom Gardner, Marty Poole, Dustin Boutwell and the late Tom Buechner–  all working from the same reference photos.  Each artist submitted two of their own photos with an additional two photos submitted by artist Wilson Ong who was not able to take part.   The result is four differing views of the ten photos, all painted in the artists’ own distinct styles. 

In one example, one of the photos (shown above), Parts,  is a still life featuring auto parts on a bench.  Each artist then worked on a still that remains faithful to the photo yet emphasizes their individual styles and techniques.  Each version is similar yet very different.

"Tools" from Tom Buechner

In the first example, Tom Buechner, working on his last group of work before his death this past June, chose to imbue the canvas with light, giving the parts a clarity of atmosphere.  The composition is faithful to the reference photo but it takes on a feel that is all its own.

"Pinup" from Tom Gardner

Tom Gardner took the photo and added an element, a photo that is actually another of the reference photos.  This addition, along with the compression of the space in his version and a slightly darker tone, changes the whole feel of the scene,  adding a sense of it being a personal space.  The bench scene becomes an extension of Gardner’s personality.

Marty Poole's "Parts"

In Marty Poole’s version, the artist adds an ethereal light from above that gives the parts an otherworldly glow.  He masterfully adds, with his handling of paint and light, a real sense of mystery to what might be considered the mundane. 

Dustin Boutwell's "Parts"

In his version of this photo, Dustin Boutwell turns to a hyper-realistic view.  It is sharp and clean and a real tour-de-force in his handling of the paint and the subject, giving it the feel of the grand still lifes of the 1800’s. 

As you can see, each artist adds something of their own to their own views of the subject, making this a great exploration of how artists translate their influences.  It is not a show to miss.  Stop in and spend some time with these four masters of paint.

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New Days– GC Myers

July 19, 2010

GC Myers- New Days 2010

This Thursday, July 22, marks the opening of New Days, my annual solo exhibition of new work at the West End Gallery in Corning. I have shown my work at the gallery for over 15 years and this is my tenth solo effort there. Feeling that the tenth show is sort of a milestone, I wanted to present the gallery with a show that really represented the full scope of my work over that timespan. I wanted to have much of the imagery that I’ve featured over the years– the Red Tree, the Red Chair and the Red Roofs, for instance– plus a few new twists.

GC Myers- Enlivened 2010

Probably the most evident new twist is a small group of pieces that feature works on paper done in monochromatic shades of black, white and gray. I basically wanted to take color out of the equation and focus on the design aspect of the work, letting other elements in the work carry the weight of the expression. Elements like line and shading take the place of the deep colors that have been part of my work for some time, giving the work a different feel even though the imagery is very much mine. The best aanalogy I can give for this work is that it’s like a song that you know so well, played by one artist in one way. Then one day, you hear a version of that song played in a very different manner and the song becomes something different. Something new.

GC Myers- Left of Center 2010

Same song. Same tune. Same lyrics.

Just played in a different way.

That’s how I see this group of work. The absence of color, for the most part, gives the pieces a feeling of spareness. As though all emotions aside from that of the main gist of the piece have been pared away, bringing the main emotional point of the painting into sharp focus. The bits of color that are used seem to pop on the surface with more force, no longer having to outshine other colors on the surface. 

 The contrast pushes their prominence even further out in front, giving no doubt where the focus in each piece lays.

GC Myers- All Is Given 2010

Thematically, I wanted this show to be an optimistic one.  I think for the most part, the feel from the pieces is forward looking.  There is a feeling in many of them of having persevered and beginning to look ahead to the new day, which always holds the potential and promise of better things to come. 

Overall, I think this is a very diverse show for me with many contrasts and in color and textures.  It says what I hoped it would and I think it holds together well on the gallery walls. 

Many thanks go out to Linda, Hedy and Bridget for their always kind encouragement.  If you get the chance, please stop out at the opening this Thursday which runs from 5-7:30 PM at the West End Gallery on Market Street in Corning.  You don’t want to miss the exhibit in the Upstairs Gallery featuring painters Tom Buechner, Tom Gardner, Marty Poole and Dustin Boutwell all presenting works based on the same reference photos.  Really, really interesting work and a chance to see some of the late Tom Buechner’s last work.

Hope to see you there!

—–Posted by Gary Myers—-


Dustin in Print

July 9, 2010

Face Off- Dustin Boutwell

Look for West End Gallery artist Dustin Boutwell in this month’s issue of the online magazine, POETSandARTISTS.  There is a wonderful spread featuring a question and answer session with Dustin as well as some inside info on some of his unique signature pieces.  It starts on page 64 which you can scroll to on the bottom of the page.  It’s a great look at the work of one of the most talented painters to emerge from this area.  Don’t miss it!

And to see more of Dustin’s new work, stop in starting July 22 at the West End Gallery.  Dustin is one of the four artists in the Upstairs Showcase, Four Views.  In this exhibit four of the gallery’s top artists- Dustin Boutwell, the late Tom Buechner, fresh off his recent solo show Marty Poole and Tom Gardner– each do their own interpretation of 2 photos submitted by each artist plus two from another artist not participating in the exhibit.  So, there are ten photos with four differing versions of each.  It should be a most interesting show!  Must see!

Congratulations, Dustin, on the great article and on the great work!

Inchoate- Dustin Boutwell


Gallery Gems

February 4, 2010

Our annual exhibit of small paintings, Little Gems, opens tomorrow night.  This year’s offerings really makeup a wonderful group of work and the walls are filled with selections from nearly every gallery artist in a wide range of styles and subjects.

In other words, there is something interesting for just about anyone.

From Dustin Boutwell’s tiny still lifes, like his Tootsie above, to the whimsical creature characters, such as  Pig Brother shown here, from Wilson Ong, there are too many highlights to mention.  We, here at the gallery, think this might be the best all-around group of small paintings we’ve had in the sixteen years that Little Gems has been held.

Little Gems opens Friday evening, February 5th, with a reception that starts at 5 PM and runs until 7:30 PM.  We’ll be featuring the music of flute trio A.m.A. throughout the evening.  This year’s reception is generously sponsored by a great friend of the gallery, Jo Ann Bonady and her son Joseph Bonady.

We look forward to seeing you there!