INTERSECTION, an exhibition of six Montserrat alumni, opens at Float Gallery

August 6, 2021

Six local painters, all Montserrat alumni, have come together to respond artistically to the landscape, architecture, and community of the North Shore. In doing so, their work seeks to examine the relationship between place and personhood. The group spans nearly a decade of graduation years—from 2012 to 2021—and features a broad varieties of styles, practices, and approaches to art. All told, INTERSECTION features work by Michael Aghahowa, Jon Bolles, Morgan Dyer, Amanda Hawkins, Colin McGuire, and Rebecca Nagle.

The show has been generously sponsored by Eileen Mueller, who has enabled the artists to exhibit at FLOAT gallery. Discussing the show, Mueller said “I am thrilled to support these talented young artists. My intention is to help provide an opportunity to showcase their work and give them experience in the business side of being an artist… Art as a business is a doable aspiration, and I believe the energy and talent of youthful expression needs to be seen and affirmed.”

Rebecca Nagle and Jon Bolles both use light and color to engage with the landscape and architecture of the North Shore. Nagle’s sensitivity of mark, immersive color and empathy for her subject matter evokes emotion, through an undulation of reality and abstraction. Bolles’ paintings employ the intersection of architectural elements, but light is the true subject matter of his visual interrogations.

Morgan Dyer and Colin McGuire both point their creative attention seaward, making art that resembles and reflects the defining feature of our Oceanside communities. Dyer uses Cape Ann’s rocky coast as fuel for abstraction, laying a canvas over rocky ground to create tide pools of paint that dry in shapes reminiscent of the land’s own contours. McGuire’s work is intuitive and direct, and his use of thick, impasto paint invites the viewer to engage both with the pictorial depiction and the paint itself.

Amanda Hawkins and Michael Aghahowa use a critical eye and an understanding of history to inform their work. Hawkins looks to the landscape of the area itself for her subject matter: “The local ecology speaks to past histories of the land,” she says. “Invasive species indicate human movement, rock walls imply property lines, and new growth trees indicate the shifting ethics of Cape Ann residents.” Michael Aghahowa uses paint to question, reflect and engage with various histories. His creative practice is rooted in community engagement and examines different aspects of the human experience through paintings that encapsulate both figuration and abstraction.

INTERSECTION is on display at FLOAT Gallery, 77 Rocky Neck Avenue, Gloucester MA.

It opened on August 3rd and will remain up until August 30, 2021. The reception will be held Thursday, August 12, from 4-8 PM.