At Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery, 'Summer's Light' Isn't Just Flowery | Visual Art | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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At Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery, 'Summer's Light' Isn't Just Flowery

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Published August 24, 2022 at 10:00 a.m.


"Peony Profusion" by Elizabeth Allen - COURTESY OF FURCHGOTT SOURDIFFE GALLERY
  • Courtesy Of Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery
  • "Peony Profusion" by Elizabeth Allen

If you expect that the works in an exhibit called "Summer's Light" might be heavy on the florals, you'd be right. But the current show at Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery in Shelburne is more diverse, with dramatic abstractions, mixed-media works and sculptures that seem utterly impartial to the seasons. The gallery even slips in a few pieces that look suspiciously autumnal. OK, perhaps the light is nice then, too.

Still, few things represent the evanescent glory of summer better than flowers, and artists find myriad ways to picture their petals: the delicate graphite drawings of Miriam Adams; the luscious, brushy oils of Kate Longmaid and Elizabeth Allen; the effervescent watercolors of Annelein Beukenkamp; Dianne Shullenberger's exquisite fabric collages that manage to capture the reflections of clouds in a grassy pond despite her matte medium.

If Barbara Wagner and Richard Weis avoid any literal manifestation of summer, their bold abstract paintings certainly have a way with light, particularly the explosive pieces in Wagner's "Wildfire Series." Confronted with abstract sculptures, though, you might wonder, "Whose summer?" Still, Clark Derbes' carved and painted wood geometrics and Nancy Diefenbach's elegant meditations in marble are engaging to behold.

David Maille has essentially created his own medium: He paints luminous nature scenes in oil and metal leaf on wood, then lays 3D pieces of the same wood over the painting, simulating a tiny forest. Maille's works seem to present a mystical borealis through the trees. But the bare branches portend a season we may not want to think about yet.

"Summer's Light" is on view through September 3.

The original print version of this article was headlined "Art Spotlight: Summer's Light"