Two shows currently share space at the Old Sculpin Gallery in Edgartown. They are Treasures from our Attic: Celebrating MVAA Artists, Old & New, and Summer’s End: Our Favorite Island Events. Both will run until October 15, when the gallery closes for the season.
Gallery director Jennifer Kowal selected work from the permanent collection, some of which are up for review, to display in the main gallery.
The Martha’s Vineyard Arts Association, which operates Old Sculpin, will decide whether to keep these items or de-accession (sell) them. Each of the alcoves off the main gallery room exhibits works arranged thematically.
Boats have pride of place in the first alcove, including two lively watercolors, one by Renée O’Sullivan, “Fishermen, Menemsha,” and Francis Chapin’s “Fishing Shacks.” Seascapes in a variety of media are on display in the second alcove. One striking black-and-white photograph by Christopher Wright, “Lucy Vincent by Moonlight,” evokes the beach as moonscape. June Schoppe has dramatically abstracted beach and sand into their essence in “Breach.”
Flora and fauna reign in the third alcove, with a serigraph by Sharon Rosenfeld, “Landscape,” portraying an inlet or stream framed by golden grasses and light-splashed foliage. This work’s water, richly textured with hatching, could have come straight out of a woodcut.
Another distinctive work is Sharon McCann Daly’s “Spring.” The artist has turned the grass, beach debris, and shrubbery into a mélange of spiked masses rendered in brown and black.
Ruth Appledoorn Mead’s handsome watercolor of boats hangs at the end of the central gallery. Standing out as one of the few entirely abstract works in the “Treasures” show, “Elements of Nature” by Theresa Duble balances blue shades with orange highlights in a composition of rounded shapes. Also on view are two O’Sullivan watercolors that treat Oak Bluffs as their subject: “Gingerbread Oak Bluffs” and “Oak Bluffs Kites Flying.”
In the smaller Ruth Appledoorn Mead Gallery are works grouped loosely according to four of the Island’s most popular summer events. Brian Kirkpatrick’s antic “Heads & Tails,” a colorful graphic-style composition of fish parts dotted with bull’s eyes for fish eyes, hangs under the Derby heading. Nearby is a small box Mr. Kirkpatrick has decorated with a painting, “Me with Striper.”
A print of Vaclav Vytlacil’s “The Happy Fisherman” also hangs in this section. The gallery is selling limited edition giclée prints of this work by the well-known artist.
Ned Reade’s watercolor, “Twelve Meter Race,” shares wall space in the section labeled Regatta with boating photographs by Alison Shaw, Louisa Gould, and others. A cluster of animal portraits representing this exhibit’s Agricultural Fair category is hung adjacent to the boat collection. Printmaker Katherine Grey’s linocut, “Two Sheep,” is included, along with alpacas by Gail Rodney.
The fourth category represented in “Summer’s End: Our Favorite Island Events” presents work reflecting Illumination Night in mood, if not always in location. One painting that stands out in this grouping is by MB Thompson Dowlin, even though the setting is not Oak Bluffs. Her “Dock Street Gourmet” brings together tourists, signs, and shadows in a realist take on Edgartown’s road to the Chappy ferry. Also in this category is a serigraph by Sharon Rosenfeld, “Untitled Landscape,” which uses the medium to establish a soft, round effect in its greenery, punctuated with hot red accents.
“We had a really great season,” says Ms. Kowal, adding that this was despite a slow July because of the weather. The gallery will celebrate its 60th season in 2014.