Friday, May 31, 2013

JERICHO: Confluence at Emile A. Gruppe Gallery

Confluence: Rivers and Mountains / Art and Science / Workmates and Friends 

Exhibit runs May 30 – June 16, 2013
Opening Reception: Sunday, June 2 from 1 – 4 pm with Artist Talk at 2 pm

Shoshone Butte by Sacha Pealer
Come view the intersection of art and science through the creative works of three local natural scientists.  This show at the Emile A. Gruppe Gallery in Jericho, VT features the work of Gretchen Alexander (fiber art and watercolors), Sacha Pealer (pastels) and Ned Swanberg (watercolors).

 The trio work for the Rivers Program in the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources; Gretchen works as a river scientist helping assess the health of rivers and their corridors, and Ned and Sacha both work to protect Vermont’s floodplains. Casual conversations revealed a mutual interest in nature journaling and, upon Ned’s suggestion, the three started to share a journal to record drawings and writings.

Meander I – Gretchen Alexander
Over the past several years they have passed the journal around and taken turns recording their observations and feelings of their daily lives.  This show furthers their artistic journey together and features a variety of subject matter and mediums, many pieces a direct reflection of the work in their professional lives. 

The show runs from May 30 – June 16 and the public is invited to an opening reception on Sunday June 2 from 1 – 4 pm. Their shared journal will also be on display and the artists will give a brief talk about their works during the opening reception.

Before the Day by Ned Swanberg
Gretchen Alexander has dabbled in many mediums over the years, but currently is focused in fiber arts. Drawing on her background in aquatic ecology, much of her work has an aquatic theme, and through felting, stitching, and a Japanese fish printing technique called Gyotaku, she explores themes that convey ecological processes, scales of life, and the interconnectedness of the natural world. Some works featured in this show are literal representations of large-scale scientific concepts, while others are organismal in scale and inspired by spiritual experiences with and/or admiration for the animals featured. Watercolors of some of her favorite places will also be on display.

Sacha Pealer likes to get her hands, face, and clothes covered with chalk dust. Sometimes she traces on the page the shape or texture of some distant ridge she walked in years past as a field botanist, river scientist, or writer. Sometimes she sits out in swarms of mosquitoes, relentless wind, or glaring sun, engrossed for hours by the process of blending colors to match the earth. Sometimes she hoards images of land forms and skylines in her mind's eye, only to tease them out on paper later. Through art--she discovers--she can be free and light.

Ned Swanberg struggles to celebrate his love for the natural world and to find a way to live honorably in its beauty. Ned’s journals have evolved from lists of daily discoveries to incorporate small sketches and watercolors. Sharing a nature journal with friends has been a rich slow motion conversation of wonder. When it gets too cold for watercolors outside (or in the car) Ned will linger on weekend mornings to paint from photographs collected on walks over the year. It is an honor to see the beauty of the world and to try and share it with others on the journey. Ned lives near the White River and loves walking with mountains and rivers.