Few things say summer like sun, sand, surf and flowers. While flowers commence their blooms in springtime, the riot of color of bougainvillea in summer sun, or sunflowers shifting as the sun transits from east to west are beacons of the season. Flowering opens on June 21 and continues through September 4.
The exhibition includes painting, sculpture, watercolors, drawings and photographs by many gallery artists. Among the works are Joan Bankemper’s ceramic vessels, sculptures clothed in hundreds of hand-built flowers of porcelain and clay, combined with figurines, birds, bees, pea pods, eggplants. Each of the ceramic vessels is a garden for Bankemper, who used to be a conceptual artist creating healing gardens out in the world for 25 years. Hung Liu’s favorite flower is the dandelion. Her two 60 x 60 inch Za Zhong (multi-layer paint and resin) pieces magnify this special flower in scale, turning it into a symbol of migration.
The dandelion seeds travel where they land and propagate a new series of flowers in new locations. One of Liu’s works has a grasshopper, the other a praying mantis, both powerful and profound statements about our current state of the world. Timothy Cummings uses flowers to adorn The Performers, the woman’s hat is a pile of colorful flowers, while she holds a sunflower in her hands, tucking her musical instrument under her arm in her invented dirndl dress. The composition is a conception and vision of this self-taught artist. Michael Gregory’s favorite flower is the tulip, a symbol of beauty and impermanence. His small oil paintings are like contemporary icons. He begins the paintings after buying a bouquet of tulips. The tulips fade away long before the artist finishes creating their beings in oil on panel, bringing each one from darkness to light.
Joseph Raffael’s 24 x 24 inch watercolors feature flowers at the height of their seasons, cherry blossoms filled with springtime light, a water lily bathed in summer sun, a bouquet from a friend, a celebratory ode to the end of winter, darkness and cold, each symbolic of human emotions, hope, healing, love, etc. Carolyn Brady’s large-scale watercolors celebrate flowers. White Irises/Evening depicts the view out the artist’s living room window at her summer home in Vinalhaven, Maine. The garden was one of her primary subjects. In White Irises/Evening the artist juxtaposed the lush flowers against an abstract sunset—the height of summer magic.