On Exhibit: Clever, stunning works by Oakroom Artists on view at The Artists’ Space

An exhibition shot of the Oakroom Artists' show at The Artists’ Space at The National Bottle Museum in Ballston Spa.
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An exhibition shot of the Oakroom Artists' show at The Artists’ Space at The National Bottle Museum in Ballston Spa.

The Oakroom Artists group is nothing short of prolific.

The Capital Region-based art association has been around for 65 years and has 24 members. Its latest show is on view at The Artists’ Space at The National Bottle Museum in Ballston Spa, featuring more than 60 works including paintings, sculptures, photography and more.

One of the first works viewers see is Fred Neudoerffer’s “Petal Project ‘Ending,’” a stunning closeup photograph of wilting yellow and pink petals curling in on themselves.

A richly textured still life from Helga Prichard, titled “Just Flowers,” follows. It’s a blend of acrylic and collage, done so that the flowers have a honeycomb texture and seem to lift just slightly off the canvas.

A bit further on in the show is a series of nine moody abstract monotypes from Kathy Klompas. Called “Woven,” the blue, purple and red lines stretching up and down each work echo the warp found in fabric. Nearby, vibrant shades of yellows and greens from a series of still lifes by Robin Rosenthal brighten things up. The three small oil paintings dot a corner of the exhibit and stand out both for their vivid colors and use of shadows.

Several clever watercolor/pastel streetscapes from Karen Gerstenberger will have viewers looking down to look up. In each somewhat drably-colored piece, there is a puddle in the foreground, reflecting the blue sky above.

Close by are similarly clever paintings from Doretta Miller, who places a roaring bear and an intimidating bird of prey in an ordinary vegetable patch, with tomato vines creating a lush landscape for the wild creatures to roam. The juxtaposition of the creatures with the ubiquitous plants is amusingly jarring.

A wood engraving by artist George Dirolf strikes an eerie note. Titled “Hubris Greed” and perhaps inspired by the Greek myth of Icarus, it features a man dressed in a suit and tie, falling as the feathers on his fabricated wings scatter.

Thoughtful sculptures by Phyllis Kulmatiski and Audrie Sturman break up the two-dimensional works. In one of Kulmatiski’s clay pieces, called “Migrant Madonna,” a worried woman with eyes looking out at the viewer cradles a baby.

The show will run through Sep. 18 at The Artists’ Space at The National Bottle Museum (76 Milton Ave. Ballston Spa). Museum hours are 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Wed. – Sat.

For more information follow The Artists’ Space on Facebook or Instagram, or visit oakroomartists.wordpress.com.

In other visual arts news, the Stockade Villagers’ Outdoor Art Show kicks off at 10 a.m. on Saturday, featuring work from artists near and far.

It’s the 70th anniversary of the event, which was started in 1951 and brought in 75 artists in its first year. Artists and artwork will line Ferry and Front Streets in the Stockade until 4 p.m. Saturday. The judges this year are Laini Nemett, a visual arts professor at Union College whose work has been exhibited in the United States and abroad, and Kenneth Hawkey, a Schenectady native known for his landscape and streetscape paintings.

The rain date is Sunday. For more information visit thestockadeartshow.com.

Categories: Art, Life and Arts

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