By Lindsey Davis
Boston, MA – Audio Concepts’ Experience Center is comprised of numerous showrooms decked out in high-tech home theater systems — a store disguised as side-by-side living rooms and open aired spaces. Now, work from local artists and art students will cover these walls until August, as part of a new fine art exhibition called “State of the Art.”
The title plays with the dynamic created between technology and art, which is fitting since each room uses both to create its own distinct character, a character embodied by the room’s first impressions as you enter. Each room is named after a well-known literary figure like Thoreau, Kerouac and Verne whose personalities inspire the mood of each space, each dedicated to one artist like the wet abstract impressionism of Bonnie Lanzillotta and the bright architectural scenes of Arlene Greenspan.
The work of abstract artist Connie Kolman fills the open aired space at the front of the store — the only part of the interior where it’s obvious you’re actually in a store and not just intruding on the personal space of someone who really loves home entertainment. Two of Helen Lee’s colorful abstract acrylic works sit in the space lined with different light fixtures — dozens of bulbs lighting up the horizontal and vertical lines.
Ed Stitt’s oil works fill the Thoreau room, showing simple realism while focusing in on light. His bio said that he “tries to paint the ‘Golden Moment’ — when the subject has a timeless beauty…” One of his smaller pieces, a 16”x20” oil on linen work titled, “Mirror Self Portrait with Easel,” shows a rounded mirror hanging on the side of a brick building just as its corner is in shadow, and looking closely you’ll see the artist at his easel, still in the shadow close to the sun.
Glenda Tall’s similarly realistic paintings fill an adjacent room, all scenes from a trip to Cuba she had snapped on a camera before coming home to paint them. Her works give the room an exotic feeling it wouldn’t have had otherwise.
A jury selected the five art students from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design who displayed their work in the hallway. You could hardly tell the work was by the learning and not the learned — the mixed media, photography, acrylic, oil and colored pencil breathed a very exciting breath into what would have been a boring hallway — especially compared to its surrounding showrooms filled with art.
(“State of the Art” runs through August at Audio Concepts, 870 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston. For more information, call (617) 734-1800.)