Michele Harvey has been hailed as one of the great new painters of the American landscape. Her work has been featured in Architectural Digest and chosen to grace some of the most important corporate collections in the nation. This acclaim is well deserved; her technique in oils is superb, her romantic style haunting. The artist, who is from upper New York State, paints the tree-filled landscapes she has known from childhood, imbuing them with a nostalgic, dreamlike quality that renders them extraordinary. Harvey's use of a muted, fairly restricted palette creates works of great subtlety, whether she is depicting trees heavy with the full leaf of summer or standing leafless and snowbound in the thrall of winter. Often the landscapes depicted are shrouded in mist. It is a testament to the consummate skill of the artist that light seems to emanate from her canvases rendering each a masterpiece. Art never fully captures the ineffable quality of nature. That is precisely what makes it so captivating. "The best art is not passive," says Harvey. "It's an invitation and requires viewers to bring their own feeling, understanding and experience to the process, becoming one with it. This commingling breathes new life into an otherwise lifeless creation and assures its continuance. Art becomes shared experience or awareness looking at itself, from another of its infinite perspectives." Harvey recently exhibited a series of works entitled, "Watermark: Michele Harvey & Gilmmerglass," at the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y.
From his Ruskin studio overlooking Little Manatee River, Bruce Marsh creates both large-scale, photorealistic oil paintings and more loosely rendered watercolor studies. His works hang in museums and corporate collections around the state, including Sarasota's Ringling Museum; the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC; Museum of Fine Art in St. Petersburg; Tampa Museum of Art; and the Polk Museum of Art in Lakeland. Marsh says that his work is "an extension of my lifelong interest in the processes of perception and representation. The places involve large expanses of space, a clarity of light, and a chaos of surface incident that serves to measure the expanse of the places. Color is of critical importance, as I seek to invent means to invoke atmosphere, space, and shifting sources of light." For more information about Marsh's work, visit http://brucemarsh.net.
Heidi Edwards’ works reveal a preoccupation with the profusion of color and form within the vastness of Florida’s flat topography. Edwards says that in the 40 years she's been painting landscapes, she never tires of the inspiration they provide. "I strive to portray the essence of these places through color and convey a mood that elevates the spirit of my viewers, much the same as these sustain and inspire me," she says. For more information about Edwards' work, visit www.heidiedwards.com.
Bill Nichols says that as a young painter, he "saw the landscape for its potential as both a conveyor of visual beauty and a messenger of meaningful experience. The difficulty was defining what was special about it for me and then finding a way of orchestrating the visual vocabulary to meet what I was seeing and feeling. It's been over forty years that I have been working with the landscape as a subject capable of acting as a mirror to so many experiential qualities. Whether it be the sensual qualities of colors, textures, and patterns or its ability to generate feelings of silence, intimacy, or being part of the world we inhabit, it is a rich theme to work with that continues to hold sway to my interests." He says that he gradually came to realize that his profound interest in painting landscapes came from his years as a young boy in upper Wisconsin "and the enduring memories of hiking, fishing and exploring that I did by myself. I hope that some of those experiences of mystery, wonder and time will be shared in my work." Nichols was honored last year by a retrospective at the Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio. For more information about Bill Nichols, visit www.williamnicholsfineart.com.
Born in Argentina, the photographer Pablo Soria now lives and works in Miami. His works are part of major private and public collections, including at the Museo de Arte Moderno and the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, both in Buenos Aires, Argentina; the Museum of Art in Fort Lauderdale; the Museo del Barrio Collection in New York City; and the Museum of Fine Art in Houston. For more information about Pablo Soria, visit www.pablosoria.com.
Nancy Hellebrand’s nature photographs have been exhibited internationally in museums and galleries since 1973. “Nature is full and rich without my taking pictures of it,” she says. “Yet I’ve come to see trees, rocks, clouds and streams as raw material with which to see something new.” Her photography captures subtle correspondences and repeated patterns in the images of natural forms. She accomplishes this with a range of old-school and cutting-edge techniques, from multiple exposure to digital manipulation. Hellebrand captures nature’s grandeur far better than a traditional approach ever could. Hellebrand’s photographs are in public collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Museum of the City of London, Princeton University Art Museum, Yale University Art Gallery, and Philadelphia Museum of Art. At the National Portrait Gallery, she had a solo exhibition where she was the first American artist and the first living woman to exhibit. Awards include fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. She taught photography at Yale University, Parsons The New School for Design, University of the Arts, and Bucks County Community College. For more information about Nancy Hellebrand, visit www.nancyhellebrand.com. Hellebrand’s work was featured last year at the James A Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, in the exhibition, "Learning to See."
Allyn Gallup, founder and president of Allyn Gallup Contemporary Art, says that these artists "invite viewers to explore the world as it is rarely seen or described. Who knows - you may never see the landscape that surrounds us in same way again."
Allyn Gallup Contemporary Art was established in 1991. Since the beginning, its founder, Allyn Gallup, has been committed to providing serious art to the community. Through this commitment, the gallery has earned the reputation as the leading place in southwest Florida to view contemporary art. The gallery’s collection includes paintings, sculptures, mixed-media assemblages, works on paper and prints by mid-career artists with well-established exhibition records. The gallery also occasionally showcases works by promising emerging artists.