Dedicated to covering the visual arts community in Connecticut.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

City Gallery Give Art opening tomorrow

City Gallery
994 State St., New Haven, (203) 782-2489
Give Art
Nov. 24—Dec. 23, 2007.
Opening reception, Sun., Dec. 2, 12—4 p.m.

Tis the season, I guess, for abstraction. But that's usually the case at City Gallery in New Haven. For its annual year-ending holiday Give Art show, City Gallery members are showcasing a lot of smaller works. All the works are available for sale at the fixed price of $100 each. The full spectrum of materials and techniques employed by gallery artists is on display. Show participants include new members Deborah McDuff (mask making) and Freddi Elton (photography). This holiday season, City Gallery members are offering the opportunity to give the gift of art at an affordable price.

For the most part, the work is collage-based. Several artists incorporate found or non-traditional materials. (Although what might have been considered a non-traditional material in the past—a delicate twig as used by Meg Bloom, a torn piece of corrugated cardboard employed by Jane Harris, fine mesh screening added by Connie Pfeiffer, a strip of rough tree bark completing a Nancy Eisenfeld composition—is increasingly becoming the new norm.)

Deborah McDuff offers lively collages in which she creates masks out of things like cut-up soda cans, feathers, fabric and beads. There are some beautiful watercolors by Judy Atlas. Almost pastel-like, they radiate deep vibrant color. One, speckled with light blue dots, looks like some beautiful chaos attending the Big Bang or other cosmic event. Another (there was no sheet with titles available when I visited), in which washes and spatters of green range over a background of black, orange and cream, offers a convincing illusion of depth.

Jefri Ruchti's charcoal and/or graphite drawings revel in rich twists of light and shadow, suggesting natural if unidentifiable forms. With Freddi Elton's photographs, there is a sense of time in suspended animation. Her images zoom in close on layers of ice, capturing a vision of cracks, bubbles and needle-like forms.

The opening reception is Sun., Dec. 2, from 12—4 p.m.

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