HISTORIC PRINT SELECTIONS FROM OUR GALLERY
STOP BY FOR SOME HOLIDAY CHEER AND SEE
OUR FULL COLLECTION OF PAINTINGS AND PRINTS
IN ALL PRICE RANGES AND STYLES.
Winter in the Catskills, by Doris Lee
Silent Night, by George Grosz
Boys on the Beach, by Paul Cadmus
Seated Nude, by Adrienne Mierzwa
Back Stage, by Raphael Soyer
Lady Apples on the Table, by Adrienne Mierzwa
December 8 thru January 7, 2007
Reception and Gallery Talk
Saturday, December 8
6 — 8 PM
K.Rakoll, a german-born artist living in Spain has created a phonetic alphabet that comprises all human languge. This exhibition of painting, prints, and sculptures revealing his codified, symbolic universe will be on display at be Gallery from December 8 through January 7, 2007.
SALON BE IN DECEMBER 2007
Barbara Bash Calligraphy Mind
Talk and Demonstration
Sunday, December 9, 11:00 am
Since the earliest times humans have been reading the language of the world -tiny tracks in the sand, a flight of birds across the sky, a river winding slowly through the hills. The power of this visual language has distilled deep down into our alphabet. Come follow the journey of these ancient forms as they evolved through the centuries, right up to the present moment - direct, alive and on-the-spot.
SALON BE IN OCTOBER 2007
WOMEN IN THE WOODS
ARTISTS PANEL AND DISCUSSION
Friday, October 12
FUN WITH FUNGI
BeGallery in High Falls launches exhibit by 3 artists using natural materials this Saturday
by Ken Greene, Ulster Publishing - 10/4/07
Mushrooms, beeswax, nests and bones: These small wonders have been admired, collected and transformed into works of art by three distinct local artists. Cynthia Winika considers herself to be an “accidental mycologist.” “Mushrooms,” she says, “are a bizarre lifeform.” Winika delights in discovering ways to use specimens that she collects in and around New Paltz to create art. Her spore paintings use the mycological technique of spore printing with the ancient wax-based art of encaustics. Winika is a master of printmaking and encaustic techniques and teaches at R & F Paints in Kingston. Her work can be seen in almost every book published about the encaustic process.
High Falls artist Kristin Flynn’s work presents tonal studies of dead birds, abandoned nests and eggs, bones, rocks and skulls. “Birds are often associated with transcendence,” she says. “They are strong enough to migrate thousands of miles, yet are graceful and fragile. Our human actions have brought on an environmental crisis that is causing the extinction of species and silencing the birds.” Flynn is represented in Manhattan by Cheryl McGinnis Gallery.
Lisa Frank, also of High Falls, seamlessly blends the high-tech with the natural. She creates scanographs of jack-in-the-pulpits, mushrooms, nests, eggs, ferns and seeds, which she stages in patterns and layers. “Nature’s design seems infinitely wise, arbitrary, powerful and complex,” she says. “As an observer and witness, I am repeatedly stopped in my tracks to wonder, ‘How in the world did this happen?’ My intention is to capture my wonderment in ways that translate to the viewer.”
The work of these three artists will be on display at beGallery in October. Director Barbara Esmark strives to show work of local, national and international artists in her two-room gallery space in High Falls. She believes that a gallery should also be like a museum: a place where anyone can come and experience art. “You don’t have to buy to see the art,” she says. To augment this philosophy, Esmark uses the space to hold what she calls “Salon-be.” The gatherings present artist demonstrations, slideshows and discussions for the public.
Locals, visitors, art collectors and school groups have come to her previous shows, which have included a Cinco de Mayo show of Mexican artists, unique printmaking, and traditional landscape paintings. Esmark has grouped Winika, Flynn and Frank because each uses elements of the natural environment for inspiration as well as physical material. “These three artists take us on divergent paths through areas that are familiar to all of us: their own backyards and the woods of the Shawangunk Ridge,” she says. “The artists come together at the crossroads of nature and the human element in the world.”
The show, called “Natural Elements: Art and the Local Environment,” opens with a reception on Saturday, October 6 from 6 to 8 p.m. Salon-be will host an interview session and discussion with the artists on Friday, October 12 at 6:30 p.m. BeGallery is located at 11 Mohonk Road in High Falls. To reach the gallery, e-mail email@example.com or call (845) 687-0660. For more information about the show and gallery, visit www.begallery.com.
SALON BE IN AUGUST 2007
beGallery will host three salons during the month of August on
consecutive weekends starting on August 12.
Stone Ridge Artist Ruth Wetzel will speak about her ocean series and demonstrate her mixed media drawing technique. Using matte medium, colored pencils, gouache and graphite, Wetzel gets a luminosity that compares to glazing. Wetzel’s work is currently on exhibition in the gallery.
beentertained Saturday, August 18 7:30 pm
A woman waits for her boyfriend…
A woman rejects work, buses and car ownership, desiring peace and tranquility…
A woman seeks to keep her feet happy….
Verena Tay is an international artist from Singapore who will be performing for the first time in the Hudson Valley at be Gallery. The piece she will be presenting, 3 Women, is composed of three short monologues (Good Girls Don’t Wait, Jiving on Java, The Perfect Shoe) about different characters obsessed with various small, but engrossing, dilemmas of daily existence. This simple, spare, physically-based production of 3 Women is theatre at its most elemental an intimate. Photo:Jori Ketten, courtesy of Magdalena USA
betransported Sunday, August 26 10:30 am
THE ADVENTURES OF A PLEIN AIR PAINTER
From Slabsides to the Sierra, local artist Lynne Friedman has painted her way around the world. She’ll tell us how working in nature has honed not only her artistic techniques, but how she deals with international travel and art materials, as well as the bugs, people and noise of outdoor painting – the pleasures and the pitfalls. All this and images of her paintings and drawings from Costa Rica, Spain, France, New Mexico, Northern California and our own Hudson Valley (to name a few). Refreshments served. Friedman’s work is on exhibition in the gallery.
Refreshments and discussion with each event.
Free and open to the public.
LIMITED SEATING. RESERVATIONS SUGGESTED.
ESMARK ON WAMC
ALBANY, NY (2007-07-05) Dogs have been with people for a long time, for thousands of years they aided us in our survival, and they now serve as valued companions for many dog owners. Jennifer Hicks has completed a series of works which explore the relationship between humans and dogs. Founder and owner of the beGallery, Barbara Esmark, talks about the exhibit, and all of the exciting happenings at the gallery.
Listen to the interview:
Joe Donahue and Julia Taylor on Northeast Public Radio Roundtable
PAINTINGS OF HUMAN/DOG INTERACTIONS BY JENNIFER HICKS
GO ON VIEW AT BE GALLERY IN HIGH FALLS
Paul Smart, Ulster Publishing
A lot of art scratches at those things that bother people most, even if not always in a tangibly recognizable way. Not Jennifer Hicks, the painter whose new “Metaphysics of Man and Dogs” exhibit opens the summer season at Barbara Esmark’s beGallery in High Falls this Saturday, July 7 from 6 to 8 p.m.
Hicks arrived at her latest series of works after starting out with the simple idea that she wanted to depict “situations that calm us down…I wanted to focus on spirit.” What she ended up with were musings on the interactions, the innate relationships, of people and their dogs: a mix of sketches joined together in painterly ways that use color, brushstrokes and representational embellishments to provide a “connective tissue” to what she was after.
“I saw the spark of unspoken communication that we often take for granted,” the Massachusetts-based Hicks has said of her process. “I started doing research and readings on the history of man’s friendship with dogs. This research brought me to early cave paintings and gold-leaf religious images. And from here I went on to paint ‘Metaphysics of Man and Dogs.’”
The artist will give a talk about her new work, as well as her sources of inspiration and other artforms, during the opening reception. The show runs from July 7 through August 6 at beGallery at 11 Mohonk Road (near the intersection with Route 213) in High Falls, with hours Fridays through Mondays, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Call (845) 687-0660 or visit www.begallery.com for further information.
METAPHYSICS OF MAN AND DOGS
PBS specials, science foundation studies, and health professionals all over the world have tried to understand, define and resolve the meaning of the relationship of man and dogs. In a new show at beGallery in High Falls, the work of Jennifer Hicks offers us a visual pathway for seeing – and feeling – that connection.
Many of us are troubled by the state of the world - the seemingly endless bad news. Overscheduled, overworking, we are sometimes cocooned in an frantically paced world of our own making. Jennifer Hicks decided to do a series of paintings about situations “that calm us down.” Something to help us keep in balance. She wanted to focus on spirit. “I went for a walk on the beach to think about that idea and noticed people in the early evening with their dogs,” explains Hicks.
What emerged from her sketches, was something iconographic. Not interested in filling in the details, Hicks used her substantial drawing ability to capture the sense of what was happening. Extensive studies in body work, performance, yoga and movement along with her traditional fine art background enabled her to harness the energy and spirit of connection that infuses these pictures. “I saw the spark of unspoken communication that we often take for granted. I started doing research and readings on the history of man’s friendship with dogs. This research brought me to early cave paintings and gold leaf religious images. And from here I went on to paint, ‘Metaphysics of Man and Dogs’.”
In this series Hicks continues to work deftly with drawing materials, wax, acrylic paint and metallic oils on wood. Pieces range from 4 x 4 inch to 36 x 40 inch panels. Gold plays a significant role in the paintings and reinforces the iconic and spiritual aspects of the work, but does not overwhelm the graphite drawings, cobalt blue, subtle reds, oranges and ochre earth tones that are layered with the pigmented and clear wax. Elements of flora add to the dynamic.
Hicks has given form to the unexpressable emotional and spiritual (and material) world that we and our canine companions inhabit together. Like her other works, we have moments of unmistakable self-recognition. In the past this has been a more mysterious process – an uncanny connection to cells and tissue- and bone-like symbols. This time abstracted figural forms and the spaces in which “we” and the dogs exist capture us. The connection between humans, their dogs and each other – and the Hicks show at beGallery – is serious and playful, profound and subtle, delicate and exuberant.
ESMARK ON WAMC
Joe Donahue speaks with Barbara Esmark 5/16/07
ALBANY, NY (2007-05-17) Barbara Esmark is the owner of Be Gallery in High Falls, NY. She discusses the current exhibit — Crossing Borders: Contemporary Mexican Art and Folk Art which includes whimsical depictions of village life contrasted with the sharp lines and frenetic energy of urban Mexico.
Visit this link for the full story:
SHOW CELEBRATES MEXICAN ART
, April 27, 2007
BeGallery in High Falls crosses borders with a new exhibition that opens May 5, Cinco de Mayo.
“Contemporary Mexican Art and Folk Art” presents the work of Mexican artists from different regions.
“Because Mexico is our most highly discussed border - the political concerns and cultural concerns, I wanted to show representative craftsmen,” said Barbara Esmark, owner of beGallery.
The diverse pieces in the show deepen awareness of the rich culture of Mexico and the expressive capacity of its people, she said.
“I thought it would be a good time to celebrate that,” Esmark said.
Some works are influenced by myth and narrative, others evoke the sounds of urban energy.
Juan Carlos Breceda’s large acrylic and pastel pieces use traditional imagery of Mexico: animals, birds, fish and women. But the artist, who studies in the state of Michoacan, flattens the inhabitants of his works.
In “Caballo con Pollo” he created graphic patterns around the vibrant image of a chicken inside the belly of a white horse.
The museum quality work of Oaxacan woodcarver Armando Jimenez is rarely seen outside Mexico. His pieces are realistically rendered but imaginatively painted.
“The colors are magical,” Esmark said.
Naive artist Octavio Duarte Perez (Oaxaca) blends fables and myth with images of children, teachers, fish and cats.
“Five Faces,” an acrylic on watercolor paper, depicts a female figure whose surprised expression is mimicked by the masks that dangle from her arms and neck.
“He uses deep rich earth colors and folk art imagery, but very sophisticated design,” Esmark said.
Ronaldo Glaubitz from Rosarito (Baja) creates crowded, graphic pieces influenced by Mexico’s pyramids, weaving and graffiti. “Blue Mexico” is a fine example of his cityscapes.
Guadalupe Ballester of Baja California makes miniature and small color lithographs that depict the underwater world so much a part of her country’s economy and life.
And “Guerra,” a book of poetry of Armando Gonzales with drawings by Hugo Crosswaithe, addresses the unseen casualties of war.
The show will also feature Day of the Dead figures from Oaxaca and lacquerware by artisans from the states of Michoacan (brightly colored plates with a black background) and Guerrero (muted boxes and trays).
Gardiner resident Annie O’Neill will lend her Huichol yarn paintings for use in the show.
O’Neill, the former proprietor of Manhattan’s Mexican Folk Art who advised Nelson Rockefeller on the expansion of his collection, will appear at the May 5 opening reception.
“I want to inspire peoples’ interest in collecting,” she said.
When O’Neill first began to acquire folk art, Mexican women were still making cantaros to get their water from streams.
“Now a lot of these villages have plumbing and water, and people have access to modern materials such as plastics so they don’t have to carry a very heavy ceramic water jug,” O’Neill said.
Now decorative use drives the demand for artisan crafts.
“Artisans are able to continue a labor-intensive tradition because there is a new market for it,” O’Neill said.
The May 5 exhibit is the first in a three-part series at beGallery called Crossing Borders that examines art, artists and influences from other countries.
Reach Kathleen Wereszynski Murray at firstname.lastname@example.org or 845-437-4881.
BE GALLERY CELEBRATES CINCO DE MAYO
Dîa de los Muertos con arte vivo
Be Gallery in High Falls Celebrates Cinco de Mayo
with Mexican Art Exhibit This Saturday
You’ve got to hand it to Barbara Esmark of the High Falls-based beGallery located next door to the D&H Canal Museum on Mohonk Road. She brings all her life to art and puts what excites her on the walls for all to see. She also knows a fun time and how to impart fans of the visual arts with a similar feeling.
Starting this Saturday, May 5, she will be carrying on the growing Hudson Valley tradition of celebrating the Mexican Revolution via Cinco de Mayo by opening a new exhibit of works by Mexican artists whom she has discovered on her regular journeys to our southern neighbor over time. “Crossing Borders: Contemporary Mexican Art and Folk Art,” which runs through June 12, opens with what promises to be a great reception from 6 - 8 pm, including an informative gallery talk.
What will be on view? First off think Day of the Dead paraphernalia. Then throw in a mix of vibrant contemporary art…posterlike graphic works and Surreal paintings, ancient and modern iconography, sculpture and statment: It will all be here, bright and bold and beautiful and perfect for the shock we all need to realize that summer’s coming - along with some sort of change in the political climate.
BE GALLERY SETTLES IN HIGH FALLS
The art of helping others
Be Gallery settles in High Falls
by Paul Smart, Ulster Publishing.com
Published May 3, 2006
Barbara Esmark’s BE Gallery in High Falls may turn out being just what that sweet little community of fine restaurants and gourmet shops needs to pull its scene together and make the community, along with neighboring Rosendale and Stone Ridge, a true cultural destination. Only open since Independence Day, its three main rooms and hallway -where Judith Hoyt’s figurative works in metal, collage and encaustic, plus jewelry, were on view last month - have hosted more red dot signs of sales activity than most older galleries we’ve seen this summer. Given Esmark’s schedule for the coming year, starting with this weekend’s opening for a new solo exhibit of thoughtfully sensuous water images by New Paltz-based Dierdre Leber on Saturday, Aught 12, the red dots will only proliferate.
The gallery owner herself is showing some of her own work, but adamant about not becoming one of those galleries whose primary aim, when all is stripped away, is to get one’s own art work out into the world. Sure, she says, she may eventually give herself a full show. But only after establishing BE and the High Falls scene first.
Esmark’s history, you see, is as much around as in the arts, as much tied to the cultivating of culture’s audiences as its creation. Sure, she started off as one of those kids who spent all her time drawing and painting; who was named the first director of a teen’s art initiative in her native Philadelphia while still in high school. And yes, she spent years studying at New York’s Arts Students League, even got herself a BFA in painting from SUNY New Paltz.
But what she brings to her gallery is rarer than an artist’s understanding, or a longstanding appreciation of the arts that saw her working for experimental non-profit spaces and avant garde film distributors in the halcyon days of the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Esmark explains, in between artists interviews on a recent afternoon, how she first moved to High Falls from the City in the early 1980s when her husband, a drummer, suggested the two of them could do as well out of the city as in it. She found work at SUNY-New Paltz, at first as its leading graphics designer - a skill she had picked up along the way - and eventually as a fundraiser and Director of University Relations.
When a move to Southern California came up in the 1990s, Esmark was able to utilize her background to become the Director of Development for Cal State’s Fullerton campus. Then, moved back five years ago to the house she had rented out while away - a short jog away from the current gallery - she started doing fundraising and design/communications consulting with most of the New Paltz area’s top non-profits, including the Elting Library, Phillies Bridge Farm, the Wallkill Land Trust and the Mohonk Preserve, where she eventually became Director of Development.
In other words, Esmark learned the art of helping others help themselves through high-end fundraising and communications work at the same time that, via continuing work with live models and painting/drawing classes, she was keeping her chops up at the craft of her various art forms.
Along the way, she also kept an eye on the gallery scenes wherever she was, visited museums, and cultivated friendships with both artists and collectors.
Call it the perfect recipe for a gallerist.
“When I decided to start the gallery I knew I wanted Judy’s work,” Esmark says of the wonderfully original Hoyt, a longstanding mainstay of the local art scene whose work mixes a personal iconography of representational elements - faces on bodies holding birds or smaller people inside. A surrealistic sense of collage. Whimsy mixed with earnestness and a dark edge.
The rest, she adds, just kind of came together. She noticed Leber, whose images of women in water, pensive and private, have a richness evidence to her years of studies at the University of Pennsylvania, Skowhegan, the Arts Students League, and an MFA from Brooklyn College, at an art auction for the High Meadow School. Lynn Friedman, it turns out, is a painter she knew from her earlier years in the area. She met Martha Castillo, who makes colorfully textured monotypes with a wet clay process all her own, while on a trip to the Baja. Priscilla Bissi just graduated from SUNY New Paltz and was “discovered” by Esmark at her senior thesis exhibition. Pastel master Vincent Connelly, who we’ve written about here, was at Mohonk when she was. Charles Atwood King is from the Adirondacks, makes his own gold-leaf frames, and is set for an upcoming solo exhibit.
“I love the whole process,” she says of it all, explaining how the purchases so far have come not only from Hoyt’s friends and some drop-in traffic, but people she invited in who she “just knew” would like her quirky encaustics and metal works.
She says she’s unsure what, exactly, she’s looking for in the art she will show. Upcoming exhibits include abstracts and encaustic experiments.
When noted that everything she has carries within it a quiet beauty, a sense of elegance, Esmark seems pleased. Especially when it is noted that that elegance stretches to all aspects of her Victorian House gallery’s renovations and sense of style.
How has her own art effected what she’s doing in the gallery and vice versa?
“I chase the light around in here,” she says, adjusting the wall lighting as sunlight fades. And laughs.
“I guess you could say my mind has always been on the game, as the Robert Redford character says in ‘The Natural.’ I see it all as one form of art,” she says.
Esmark adds that along with her wish to not only show local artists, but bring in talents from elsewhere, she’s been working to show those in her gallery in California and other locations. To continue to think of new ways to enrich the entire scene she’s become a beacon for, after having stayed on its edges for years.
She shows off joint ads she’s designed with other area galleries. Talks about the conferencing she’s been doing to get the scene up and running.
“You know what a friend told me recently who hadn’t been here for some time? She was surprised at being able to kill two hours in High Falls without any effort,” Esmark says. “That feels good.”
“All the effort here…it’s hard to think I’ve only been open one month,” she adds. “It’s like I made this all up.”
In other words, even the gallery, in the final rounds, is art.