Rockport’s newest contemporary art gallery is welcoming the summer season with an exhibit of creatively reimagined contemporary seascapes. The exhibit at G19 gallery in Rockport features work by nationally recognized local and regional artists including physicist-turned-artist Dr. Regina Valluzzi, former Czech spymaster Lawrence Bittman, and Rockport and Gloucester native Kathleen Miller. The works will be on display June 7 – July 1 with a gala reception on Saturday, June 25, 4pm – 7 pm.?
Gallerist Cynthia Belchou, owner and Art Director of G19 Gallery in Rockport, MA has curated an exciting exhibit of seascapes by artists with a connection to Cape Ann. The seascape subjects in the exhibit acknowledge Rockport’s long history and storied tradition of creative art and artists. The artists’ creative use of color, form and media infuse the exhibit with a fresh, exciting, and thoroughly modern contemporary flair.
The sea and shore have always inspired artists. In contemporary art, seascapes lend themselves to abstraction and to modern styles. The simplicity of seascape compositions both invite and require an artist’s creativity to bring motion, interest, a story, or a meditation into each scene. The artists in “Waves of Inspiration” approach the sea in unique and personal ways. Each artist brings a different and fascinating insight into the subject of “sea”.
“Rhapsody on the Sea” by Regina Valluzzi
Featured artist Dr. Regina Valluzzi is an Arlington, MA resident with strong ties to Rockport’s artistic community. Her frequent visits to Rockport, MA allow her to appreciate the area’s unique seacoast, skies, natural habitats and beauty with fresh eyes on each excursion. Valluzzi was trained and worked as a research scientist for over a decade before switching to art 5 years ago. Her history as a Materials Science innovator informs her approach to painting. Valluzzi uses the unique properties of acrylic paint and media to create dazzling scenes. Transparent patterned layers of acrylic modulate sparkling metal and dimensional patterns of glimmering mica, while tiny glass spheres focus and reflect light. Valluzzi sees seascapes as a unique challenge for painting. How can a painter capture something that is always in motion? How can paint capture a scene whose essence is dancing patterns of light? By using the transparent properties of acrylic with light manipulating media, her work brings the light and movement of the sea into her mixed media paintings.
“Tranquil Moment” in oil and sand by Kathleen Miller
Featured artist Kathleen Miller is local to Cape Ann. She grew up in Gloucester and currently lives and works in Rockport, MA. Her sensitive approach to her medium and her subjects has created a strong regional following for her work. In her abstracted seascapes light and color are fractured and abstracted into juicy chunks of clear color. Her style could be described as a modernized re-imagined pointillism. Many of her paintings use sand and other natural local materials to create subtle variations in texture and granularity. The play of patterns created through her confident brushwork and finely detailed textures lead the viewer to imagine scintillating patterns of water, sand and sky. Kathleen Miller’s seascapes often feature people enjoying the scene. The human element blends perfectly with her nuanced and textured use of oil painting media.
“The European Tourists” by Lawrence Martin-Bittman
Another featured artist on exhibit is Lawrence Martin-Bittman. An ex-spy from the former Czechoslovakia, he fled to the West and defected to the USA during the Cold War. After a successful career as a Journalism professor at Boston university, Larry Bittman (Larry the Spy) relocated to Gloucester, where he maintains a studio space and a small gallery. Larry is an avid fisherman with a special relationship to the sea. His works are a clever and sophisticated mix of influences. One can see the threads of both the Folk art and Fine art of his Czech heritage running through complex pieces that draw from his deep knowledge of art. His pieces are often clever and humorous and are infused with allusions to a secret narrative. Looking at his work, one can glimpse entire mythologies he has created, capturing his special relationship with the Sea.
Cape Ann is known for beautiful scenic coasts and charming towns full of character. The beauty of the area and independent Yankee spirit has nurtured generations of artists and spawned a number of notable Art Colonies and Schools of Artistic expression. Rockport, MA has been home to The Rockport School of painting, and to generations of creatives working and exhibiting in the Rockport Art Colony. Contemporary art is flourishing in Rockport, continuing a storied tradition with renewed vibrancy.