A Gallery finds a new home up-Island

Summer exhibits explore photography, women artists, and habitat.

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—Anna-Maria Stromberg

The A Gallery has moved, and Oak Bluffs’ loss is West Tisbury’s gain.

This weekend, visitors will have a first chance to visit the gallery at its new location on State Road. The soft opening will feature new works by a number of A Gallery’s established artists, including Rez Williams, Julia Mitchell, Lucy Mitchell, Donna Straw, Mariana Cook, and James Langlois. Visitors will also get a first glimpse at a fascinating series by Lily Morris called “The Seven Deadly Sins.”

“The opening will be a representation of everyone I’m going to be showing over the summer,” gallery owner Tanya Augoustinos said.

This is the gallery owner’s third move. Her first gallery, E’kaya, was located in a small shack behind the Scottish Bakehouse, and was in operation from 2006 to 2008. In 2012, the gallerist opened the first A Gallery as a pop-up in Vineyard Haven. Following the success of that venture, Augoustinos settled on a space on Uncas Ave. in Oak Bluffs for five years. Now, she’s found a new home in a log cabin–style building on State Road that formerly housed Julie Robinson Interiors.

While the location has changed, Augoustinos’ commitment to showing contemporary, sometimes daring art, will continue to guide her curatorial choices. She’s not opposed to taking risks on artists whose appeal might seem aimed at a cosmopolitan demographic. “It’s great to be one cog in the wheel of the bigger picture representing culture on the Island,” Augoustinos said.

Augoustinos will host three focused exhibits this summer. The first will be dedicated to photography. It will include the work of two new artists to the gallery, John Zannini and Anna-Maria Strömberg. Both photographers focus on nature, but with two very different approaches to their subject matter. Also included in the exhibit will be new work by Christopher Wright, Ed Grazda, Amy Upton, and Brigitte Cornand. Grazda is known for his vintage New York City photos, Upton is known for her scenes of urban decay, and Conrad for her mushroom images.

In late July, Augoustinos will feature the work of two groundbreaking women artists, Lily Morris and Jennifer Joanou. The latter’s work springs from an ongoing project she has been working on for many years. Joanou will present images based on pages from her extensive collection of visual journals. The artist has expanded on her original images, interpreting them through a variety of techniques including printing on linen, hand embroidery, and transparent layers. The collection of Joanou’s work offered by A Gallery will represent the New York–based artists’ first showing in a gallery setting.

Morris’ work was featured in a show at A Gallery last summer. This year, she will be showcasing images from a new series called “POV.” The artist whose photorealist images tend toward the dark and dreamlike will not disappoint fans. Her new work includes some risqué and voyeuristic elements.

The penultimate show of the 2018 season is called “Habitat,” and will feature works by a number of new artists, as well as some who have shown with Augoustinos before. The title of the show represents habitat viewed in two contexts. “It’s a balance between being immersed in and inspired by nature and reflections on the artists’ interior world,” says the gallerist.

Augoustinos is excited about the move to West Tisbury, noting that many of her artists live and work up-Island.

“Each town has its own personality.” she said. “It’s like having a relationship with several different people. Each town’s unique characteristics determine what you do in that space. I’m leaning a bit more to nature in this space. It lends itself to beautiful scenic vistas and wooded scenery.”

Although she’s been inspired by each move and the genesis of A Gallery, Augoustinos is hoping to establish herself in one location eventually. “I’m looking for a more permanent home,” she said. “Somewhere up-Island.”

 

A Gallery is open from 10:30 am to 6 pm every day except Tuesdays, when it’s open by appointment. For more information, visit agallerymv.com. A Gallery is now located at 510 State Rd. in West Tisbury.