14 High Street Sanbornville, NH 03872
The Gafney Library is presenting an artist, who has been referred to as similar to Griffin-Peterka. (see Peterka review) Daryl-Ann Dartt Hurst has an interesting statement included within the library’s press release:
calling them something that is part of our everyday vocabulary. For others, I have used words from foreign languages, and sometimes combined different languages.”
Piece titles of “Muzyczny,” a mixed media on canvas and “Alpensiec,” a mixed media on paper, bear witness to her statement. Daryl continues, “The majority of my work since November of last year has incorporated both palette knife work and oil pastel - regardless of whether the paint is oil or water-based. Learning to manage the mark made with the knife, which to me feels far more deliberate, has been part of the process. The other feature that is part of the palette knife application is the thickness and texture of the paint which was rarely exhibited in my earlier work. I am very concerned with color and attribute my jewel-tones to Matisse, Kandinsky, and Rothko.” Dartt Hurst embraces color. revels in it and sometimes that’s the problem. She makes mistakes and leaves them out there, almost because she doesn’t want to disturb the richness of the color. Matisse got away with that, but he didn’t need to cover mistakes. As beautiful as all of the knifework and palette in “Cacophony” is, there is no focal point, and it is hard to get beyond the "prettiness" of the piece. In this show, where the work is easier to see the work than the Griffin- Peterka show, the viewer deals with the visual and cognitive overload of a place that is in business to provide books, not necessarily art. But, more and more, the libraries in the area are installing hanging systems and offering those for monthly exhibits to local artists and art groups. This show offers some extraordinary pieces, and then turns around and shoots itself in the foot.
The largest pieces fall apart for different reasons. "Chasing the Sun” has a “figure” that is firmly planted on nothing; “Truant’s Holiday” never seemed to make up its mind as to where it wanted to spend it. The meat of this show was in the smaller canvases-never mind the smallest pieces, which also have merit, but are inconsistent. The best of the show are “Summer Savannah”, “Faces”, and “Mad Dog”, for stretching the oil on canvas media into a more fluid concept. Color does not overwhelm these works though they are rich in pigment. They exude a familiarity with paint, and confidence in the application missing in the larger pieces. Both of these shows could have been great… with editing. And, maybe as a two-person show to capitalize on the best of the best that both artist has to offer, Griffin-Peterka and Dartt Hurst could present a really fresh outlook on Abstract Expressionism ala 2015.
There is no lack of energy or proficiency, just a lack of eliminating filter.
Show runs through the end of February, 2015
Daryl-Ann Dartt-Hurst on Facebook
Art, Culture, Unity and Soul