VIEWS: 17 PAGES: 2 POSTED ON: 7/23/2011
Be Gentle With the Earth Artists are often people with strong points of view about any number of social issues and that passion was vividly on display in the West Side Arts Coalition’s “Be Gentle with the Earth”, May 3-28, 2010 at the Ofﬁce of the Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer. The show, curated by Margo Mead, was as poignant as it was powerful in its depiction of our planet’s heroic efforts to stem the ravages of global warming. Lush mountains, crystal clear blue waters, litter-free trails are the idyllic images of Sonia Barnett’s colorful landscapes. Leaves, Flowers, Yellow Sky, Tall Grass Near Water, each provides the viewer with a glimpse of the power and serenity of nature untrampled. Meg Boe Birns’ iconic goddess totems, Goddess of Uncertain Afﬁnities, Devi, Treetop Goddess, Anthea, seem to have been plucked from an ancient land whose people worshipped the eternal renewal of the Earth. Wood, cloth and papier maché enhance the totemic aura of the work. Dunes, Rocks and Surf, Summer Flowers, Indian Paintbrush. The very words bring us to another place, a place future generations might ﬁnd harder and harder to ﬁnd. Marguerite Borchardt, in capturing this Eden-like landscape ensures that this beauty will endure, at least through art. (photo not available) Nothing speaks renewal more than a rising sun and Carol Carpentieri captures that promise with simple, strong shapes in Graphic Sunrise. In a companion piece, Graphic Sunset, Carpentieri brings to life the mystery and drama of the approaching night. Peaceful Waters, in soft, spring-like colors offers a gentler view. Lisa Ferber’s charming line drawings and paintings pack a huge wallop. With titles such as Molly Was the First Girl on the Block to Receive Leed Certiﬁcation for Her Dollhouse, Ferber retains the child-like images of her work but the message is anything but naive. Low CO emissions, lowering carbon footprints - critical components in keeping our fragile planet alive are the serious intents behind these seemingly innocent pieces. In Elizabeth K. Hill’s Liber Creatarum all forms of life - humans, animals, plantlife - seem to be swirling together, by Marianne V. McNamara perhaps at the beginning of time, in a turquoise universe. photos by Herb Fogelson Yellow Sea and Oriental Noank I are richly colored in the Japanese style, spare but highly charged. The Dictionary Featuring is a mixed media piece, very enigmatic in the use of Sonia Barnett printed material and strong colors. Meg Boe Birns Marguerite Borchardt William Hunt’s Caring About the Earth I and Caring Carol Carpentieri About the Earth II are highly dramatic and yet extremely Lisa Ferber poignant pieces. In both works a larger-than-life, motherly Elizabeth K. Hill ﬁgure tenderly comforts an innocent and tragically William Hunt vulnerable Earth. Rini Hunter Carolyn Kaplan In three commanding watercolors, Rini Hunter’s majestic Nate Ladson animals are barely visible on their dark, shadowy Linda Lessner landscape. In Solo, Herd V and Beasts the desperation of Marianne V. McNamara the plights of animals who once roamed free, is startling Margo Mead in the paintings’ stark palette of shades of brown. Amy Rosenfeld Anne Rudder Four strong works by Carolyn Kaplan express both Robert T. Schultheis ends of the global warming spectrum. With Pond and CR Robert Scott Sunset, the viewer is offered images of vibrant life on our Patience Sundaresan planet while Black Ocean and Winter Trees are starker Nicole Titus images of the possible future of our home. Be Gentle With the Earth (cont.) Nate Ladson reminds us of the serenity of being one with nature with A Walk Thru The Park. This viewer was left wondering if future generations will have this singularly pleasurable experience. In The Falls and Night Fall, Ladson brings us two extraordinary visuals of water, thundering with power. Birds, on the other hand, brings us back to the city with a quiet observation of pigeons on a roof top - quietly observing us? Linda Lessner’s bold landscapes, Summer Evening on the Wye River, Gay Head Cliffs, Cave, remind us all too well what we and future generations are at danger of losing. With this in mind, the wild beauty of Lessner’s rocky cliffs, caves, primeval lakes and forests have never seemed more precious. (photo not available) Marianne V. McNamara brings two paintings to this most important show about the renewal of the earth. Regeneration reminds us that we humans can, and do, grow at any age. A more unfortunate and dire message is Home Sweet Home. Compelling pieces by Margo Mead, Running Not Listening to Earth, Holding Off Global Warming, Be Gentle with the Earth, Passivity Breeds Doom, depict a man and woman, at ﬁrst apathetic to the earthly turmoil around them. Their indifference turns to anxiety, then solicitude as they move to save their planet. Two very sharp and relevant poems by S. David accompany Mead’s work. Amy Rosenfeld combines painting with collage and text in her strong, graphic display of No Littering signage. The signs are placed signiﬁcantly on a grassy green background. In Nature Is Beauty, the artist’s own poem accompanies large ﬂowers and trees in lush colors and admonishes us to leave nature unspoiled. Two lyrical pieces by Anne Rudder, End of Winter and Great Lakes, placed just outside the gallery invite the viewer into this environmentally important show. With sunlight, color and text Rudder evokes the optimism and glory of our Earth’s perpetual rebirth. Robert T. Schultheis’ three superb oils remind us that cities are as vulnerable as the country in preserving life on our lonely planet. Snow Tops, Check Mate and Walking in the Rain strike a solid chord with anyone who reveres the ever-changing environment of city life and the unusual, lovely quiet it sometimes offers. In his skillful pen and ink rendering of New Order, Robert Scott brings a startling message of a chaotic planet. Or of humanity? Perhaps both. Evolving Harmony and Island Universe suggest a more harmonious struggle in the earth’s effort to endure. The lone tree in Arbor Drama is particularly heroic, its life force palpable. (photo not available) Could there be anything more magical than watching a red kite ﬂying blissfully against a dazzling, cloudless blue sky? Patience Prescott Sundaresan ennobles this delightful image in 3 oils, Kite I, Kite II and Kite III. In each painting, slight differences in the movement of the kite are subtle but the message of the free spirit pulsates. Nicole Titus offers Be Gentle with the Earth, Bird on a Lily Pond, Let Us Cultivate Our Gardens and Sad Vendor, works that are provocative in a disarmingly primitive style. Even with a palette of vibrant reds, yellows, blues and greens, Titus is still able to endow the paintings with an underlying sense of melancholy. Nineteen different artists working in nineteen individual styles - but with one clear and simple message: We are the earth and the earth is us.
Pages to are hidden for
"Be Gentle With the Earth"Please download to view full document