By Rosemary Chandler
GLOUCESTER, MA- On August 2, I had the good fortune to find myself at the Rocky Neck Art Colony for their monthly “Nights on the Neck,” during which galleries keep their doors open late into the evening and local musicians take to the streets, where they play for throngs of art enthusiasts in their move from one gallery reception to the next. Although rain showers had been forecasted, it turned out to be one of those amazing New England summer nights, where the temperature miraculously drops and the humidity vanishes at the end of a long, hot day. It was exactly the right kind of evening to visit the Neck.
Especially notable were Judith Goetemann, owner of Goetemann Gallery, who is moving in a new direction in her artwork through the introduction of bolder and brighter colors in her batik and silk dye painting; and E.J. Lefavour, who is adding stunning visual depth to her works with a technique she began using last winter, in which she layers sheets of painted glass one behind another, at Khan Studio.
Elynn Kröger Gallery and Studio, located on the second floor above another gallery at the beginning of a long row of galleries, could easily be walked past and overlooked. But Kröger’s works are not to be missed.
Standing at her gallery’s doorway, you’re immediately drawn to the enchanting, abstract landscapes hung on the opposite wall. The works invite you to stand before them and contemplate the depth of their many layers, to enter a vibrantly colored world built up from a blank canvas through countless hours of work.
You want to reach out and touch the indigo-colored tree trunks that rise up from the vivid blue forest floor in “Light in the Forest,” to follow them upwards as they extend higher and higher into the ethereal world of which they are apart, eventually ending in a leafy canopy that we can only imagine.
The works are intuitive, Kröger said, each one begun with a color, a brushstroke, and nothing more. She doesn’t work from a concept, and she is never certain where her artistic instincts will take her. When she has worked to completion, she simply knows.
And although she draws her inspiration for her works from within, the scenes of otherworldly forests, fields, and seas somehow feel familiar. Imbued with a quiet, meditative energy, Kröger’s works are like memories of beautiful dreams.
(“Nights on the Neck” is held on the first Thursday of every month, June through September, from 5:30-9 p.m. For a schedule of events, or to learn more about the galleries at the Rocky Neck Art Colony, visit rockyneckartcolony.org or call (978) 282-0917.)