John Holladay, James Murray, Louisa Gould & Maya Farber
Reception Saturday August 15, 5-7pm
Live Music by Don Groover

Show Dates August 13 - September 3

Results : 34 Photos


54 Main Street

Vineyard Haven, MA 02568

(508) 693.7373

PRESS RELEASE (Martha's Vineyard) The Louisa Gould Gallery is excited to celebrate a new show with an artist reception on Saturday, August 15, from 5-7pm at the Main Street Gallery. Don Groover will play guitar, refreshments will be served, and there will be new works to see by John Holladay, Maya Farber, James Murray, and Louisa Gould.

John Holladay is a natural talent who lives and works on the Vineyard. His talent ranges from watercolors to acrylics to the new oil paintings. John says, "When I was very young, I remember making the comment of how God created such great and beautiful landscapes. I thought, only if some day I could paint like that." Gallery owner Louisa Gould says, "John's landscapes are breathtaking, and I love being surrounded by his beautiful yet strong paintings of the Vineyard."

John comments further on his work, "Painting is a time of meditation for me. It has been a goal for me to paint nature, landscapes, and architecture. I paint the entire landscape, while excluding nothing. In other words, all the lines of rope in a Menemsha scene will be in the painting. I am passionate about being challenged by a landscape; that is pure inspiration. I have some favorite spots to paint on the island and never grow tired of the ever-changing Vineyard landscapes."

Maya Farbers bright and bold representational paintings capture her viewers and set them in a special time and place. Maya studied at The Art Students League in New York City with Maurice Prendergast. According to Maya,

"My forte has always been Collage and Still Life, using strong light and shadow to create drama reminiscent of Dutch Still Life painting.

"Recently I have been driven to contemplate natural scenes. I have been especially affected by the beauty of the countryside surrounding our farm in East Jewett, N.Y. However, the blue sky and infinite sea have also inspired me during my visits to my daughter’s home on Martha’s Vineyard. I record the scenes that appeal to me with a digital camera, transfer them to a computer, and paint the landscape in the studio using acrylic paint. Acrylic is my favorite medium since it dries rapidly, enabling me to apply many layers in quick succession.

"I am not concerned with making a painting of a photograph; rather, I use a number of photos to inspire a completed painting.

"By taking tremendous liberties with the photos, which are the scaffolding of the scene that I see, I explore different angles and light to finish a piece.

"Painting is problem-solving, whether collage, still life, or landscape. I spend much time thinking before actually completing a piece, trying to capture the light and air and the essence of a painting."

James Murray’s sculptures, whose parts are culled from the leavings of human activity and nature’s perfunctory cast-offs, are wrought with tough love, coddled with tender care, and reborn to live a different life. Deconstructed and out of context, and more often than not, juxtaposed with dissimilar materials, Murray’s found objects are re-envisioned to create pieces that are often humorous and sometimes whimsical, but always seemingly content with their current incarnation.

During this life-long pursuit as a sculptor, James Murray also works as a fine furniture builder and woodworker who transforms tired interiors into one-of-a-kind luxury living spaces. (You will see the results periodically in Home magazine and Architectural Digest.) In addition, Murray has a past life as a merchant marine captain, a one hundred-ton master in fact, an impressive credential indeed! So it is not surprising to see nautical elements constantly navigating their way into his pieces and morphing from the once useful to the simply beautiful. In Murray’s hands, a harpoon or a porthole, a mast or an oar, might find itself becoming a retired land-lubber existing comfortably in the landscape and no longer laboring at sea. Construction site leftovers, saved from a land-fill burial, now stand proudly alive on a pedestal. Murray’s primary requirement before he begins to breathe new life into a wedge of stone wrenched haplessly from the side of a mountain or into a chunk of wood thrown nonchalantly aside, is that it shows signs of having lived. Those imperfect scarred remains that no one wants, with checks and knots and whirls and cracks, are perfect.

In Murray’s series of small wooden houses, the universal shape visually draws us over, but it is the beauty marks and wounds in the wood that move us inside to our memories of home. In these amazingly simple house shapes, Murray has managed to hone ‘home’ down to its essence – inviting and protective in spite of the scarred history: actually, because of the scarred history. In his tall oak piece “Home Run,” roofed with brass brads that are reminiscent of our grandparents’ upholstered chairs, it is the deep gash from top to bottom that ultimately commands our attention. The tension we feel is created by the three small metal pieces - known in the trade as ‘pinch dogs’ - that appear to defy all odds and keep the massive piece of oak from falling apart. This somehow gives us hope that all can and will be well with the world. A lighter piece, “Welcome Post,” with its circular opening carved out by Mother Nature and its neat wedge-shaped slices carefully slit by Murray, stands erect like a reserved, but ever-smiling butler. One naturally returns the grin. Many homeless heavy metals along the edges of New York highways have been rescued and given a new lease on life by this artist who can see beauty in the ugliest of ducklings. Murray’s exceptional vision dignifies these "eyesores" so that we, too, can see.

Most pieces include cavities and crevices, those made by man, those made by nature, and those made by Murray. These slashes and splits that have the inherent potential of becoming foreboding are warm and welcoming in Murray’s work. None of his pieces, however disparate the elements within them, exude angst or anger, frustration or fear. A curve of limestone rests atop a piece of rusted cut steel smiling at passers-by. A steel spring that tirelessly supported tons of cargo moving at 70+ mph now hangs from above, framed by a halo of bronze that once guarded the opening to a cabin below decks. Unlikely unions occur between fallen slate shingles and driftwood spit onto the shore by a tumultuous Hudson. "Washashores" have made long journeys from one life to another, having no idea of their arranged marriages or elite destinies. With Murray’s adept skill and accepting sensibility, the organic and the manufactured, the ugly and the beautiful, coexist in ways that humans seem to find elusive, and somehow each piece in its reborn state of being seems happy and content with how it ended up–for this life anyway. And after only a few minutes of conversation with the artist, one realizes that he is the same.

Louisa Gould's giclees of maritime work, Vineyards capes, and still-lifes are masterfully printed and framed. Louisa has a range of subjects that depict her strong sense of composition and brush work. Louisa is a professional photographer who chooses to work from both her photographs and her imagination.

Celebrate with us this Saturday, August 15, from 5-7pm and re-visit the show until August 27th. The Louisa Gould Gallery is located at 54 Main Street, Vineyard Haven. Please call for directions at (508) 693-7373 or obtain directions at .

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