The Silas Marder Gallery‘s 8th Annual Big Show opens this weekend in Bridgehampton.
Ushering in the Hamptons‘ summer art show season, this annual event attracts hundreds of people on its opening weekend. Each year, gallery owner Silas Marder, invites more than 50 national and international artists to participate, aiming for an eclectic mix of emerging and established talent. Participating artists are given three 8 x 10-inch blank canvases and are offered little direction other than being asked to “work from their current series.”
According to Marder, the event was inspired by growing up on the East End, its connections to art history and the strong sense of community spirit found here. “Even with the seasonal comings and goings, artists, intellectuals and unique personalities have found their way into the inner circles and sincere friendships that have influenced the region,” the gallery explains.
The Big Show has a certain energetic charge that is created with the presentation of so many diverse artists and the fact that each submits three pieces. The dozens of paintings with identical dimensions make for a striking display on the gallery walls, and despite sometimes extremely varied content, the works relate. Marder‘s presentation is visually organized by the consistency of the 8 x 10-inch scale.
This exhibition is about making connections, not only between artists and individual works, but also between communities. One artist in the show might be from Bridgehampton, but the next artist might be from England or Argentina. The visiting artist may never have been on Long Island before, but each canvas serves as a sort of ambassador.
Even though some artists are not “local,” the local artists—and the local community—are positively affected by their participation and presence. This year’s exhibition will feature works by John Alexander, Ross Bleckner, Wendy White, Gordon Matheson, Aurora Robson, Charles Browning, Alice Hope, Frank Wimberley, Elizabeth Malunowicz, James Wright, Dil Hildebrand and Kimberly Goff, among many others.
An opening reception is scheduled for Saturday, May 18 from 5–9 p.m. The Big Show 8 will run through June 18. For more information, contact the Silas Marder Gallery (120 Snake Hollow Road, Bridgehampton) at 631-702-2306, [email protected] or visit silasmarder.com.