Janet Lehr Fine Arts in East Hampton is celebrating Valentine’s Day and the month of love with a special themed exhibition opening this weekend. Opening with a cocktail reception this Saturday, Valentine and Art:Together Forever features contemporary paintings and sculpture by local and internationally acclaimed artists along with floral and figurative works by late and living masters.
The color red will set the mood for a lively evening of art, and the gallery asks all visitors to dress with a festive touch of crimson to help set the mood.
Art on view includes several unique Marilyn Monroe photographs, taken by Bert Stern during his famous “last sitting” with the film icon, to “evoke a mood of desire,” alongside pieces by artists David Demers, Adam Handler, Ron Agam, Haim Mizrahi, Colin Christian, Christopher Deeton and Shimon Okshteyn. Flower studies by Warren Brandt and Paul Georges, and figure studies by Balcomb Greene and Paul Resika will round out the show.
David Demers‘ large oil paintings begin as explosions of energy and color—something between graffiti and Abstract Expressionist action paintings—and are then edited and layered to refine the images down to only the most pure and essential strokes. The result is a series of meditative works that flow with waves of color.
Never held back by adherence to one particular style, Adam Handler‘s vibrant paintings and mixed media canvases hum with energy as he explores his subconscious and stimuli from the world around him. Through his personal iconography and unique color palette, the artist manifests images he describes as melding “contemporary politics and economics, social interactions, views on love, life and death.”
Ron Agam‘s bold pieces play with color and form using various modern applications and techniques, such as innovative digital lenticular technology. The kinetic and optical works are rich with color and often monumental in stature.
Israel native and East Hampton resident Haim Mizrahi creates large action paintings, using his lengthy creative process to contemplate form and celebrate the act of painting itself. Focusing on technique over subject, Mizrahi explains, “Talent and inspiration are a given and therefore my complete effort lies within the process of accumulation and build-up of emotional layers.”
London born sculptor Colin Christian is now world famous for fabricating original, often sexually charged sculptures inspired by old sci-fi movies, pinup girl and supermodels, anime, ambient electronic music and H.P. Lovecraft. In 2004 he started using silicone in his sculptures to achieve true cartoon realism—a line drawing made flesh in three dimensions.
Christopher Deeton‘s large abstract paintings vibrate with a sense of imposing power, using bold juxtapositions of red and black, and black and white. His compositions exhibit the artist’s hand as well as Deeton’s deep connection to the strength of well-placed forms.
Southampton painter and sculptor Shimon Okshteyn creates expressive, realistic still life paintings and surreal, mixed media assemblage. His heady, arresting and sometimes taboo subject matter, such as drugs and death, is compelling to look at and hard to shake off.
See these artists, Stern’s Marilyn Monroe portraits, flowers by Brandt and Georges, and figures by Resika and Greene—and don’t forget to wear some red—at the opening reception this Saturday, February 17 from 8–11 p.m.
Janet Lehr Fine Arts is located at 68 Park Place (Starbuck’s Passage) in East Hampton. Call 631-324-3303 or visit janetlehrfineart.com for more info.