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By Cate McQuaid | The Boston Globe
November 25, 2015
GEORGE NICK: JOO JOO EYE-BALL At 88, Nick continues to paint. In these swift, expressionistic still lifes, landscapes, and self-portraits, the artist grapples with changing light and form, striving to convey the flow of time in the suggestion of a solitary moment.
Through Dec. 19. Gallery NAGA, 67 Newbury St. 617-267-9060, www.gallerynaga.com
Darkness and Wonder
October 9 – November 7, 2015 at Gallery NAGA
Peter Brooke returns to Gallery NAGA with a new body of work, Darkness and Wonder, an imaginatively reconstructed travelogue of the artist’s past two years. Peter Brooke’s inspiration can be credited to his visits to Montana, British Columbia and France as well as his home state, Vermont.
Brooke’s paintings are fabrications but are solidly based on memories of his surroundings. Intuitively reacting to the landscape, he paints using an additive and subtractive process: dark paint is laid over a lighter ground and scraped away to reveal the layers beneath.
There are various perspectives in operation in this exhibition. Philadelphia places the viewer on the threshold of a shadowy, mysterious forest. When viewing the painting Skyward, we feel as though we are in the air looking down into a dreamy, bucolic landscape. Cut Bank is a clearly rendered, idealized scene that is full of gleaming light. This painting, like the others inspired by the flat lands of Montana, has a lower perspective that lends a human scale to the objects being portrayed. Cut Bank captures an important intersection between two separate ecosystems –- marshland and prairie. It’s this edge of two distinct landscapes bumping up against each other that is visually stimulating to Brooke.
Brooke, as always, manages to draw viewers into a world of imaginary scenery capturing not only the physical beauty, but also the evanescence of each feeling. The absence of any figures or human life allows viewers to become solitary characters in each new environment, allowing them to mediate on the tension between nature and the intangible emotion of impermanence it inspires.
Peter Brooke: Darkness and Wonder is on exhibition from October 9 to November 7. A reception for the artist and the public will be held at the gallery on Friday, October 9, from 6 to 8 pm.
Images of all work on exhibition can be seen at gallerynaga.com by October 8.