Rocking the Rocks

Along with many works by all our gallery artists, “Rocking the Rocks,” is on exhibit at the Jessie Edwards Studio on the second floor of the Post Office building. In this show, the rocks, stones, and boulders that define the island’s fields and coastline are seen in a variety of aspects.

Three recent oils by Peter Gish show the way light sets off the contours and crags of the rocks along the shore. “Pots and Kettles” is a serene scene of rocks around a tidal pool in early afternoon. In “Rocks Below Spring House,” water foams around the boulders, their edges and folds cast in warm yellow and morning orange light. “Breaking Wave at Vail Beach” captures the dramatic surf crashing against the rocky shore in the afternoon light. The light in Marilyn Bogdanffy’s oil “Tidal Pool Near Scotch Beach” shows the variety of rocks to be seen in one place. Fat slabs of rock, sharp-angled and moss-covered boulders, and bleached out pebbles and stones cluster around a pool of shimmering water.

Whitney Knapp Bowditch’s two oils-on-paper show her interest in different techniques. In “Mansion Beach,” the boulders heaped under the bluffs are soft tan mounds that blend with the sand and the gentle waves that wash over them, while “Vail Beach Surf” emphasizes the texture of the foamy waves breaking over the rough edges and planes of the dark rocks in the foreground.

Sometimes one rock captures an artist’s eye and affection. The rock in Kate Knapp’s “Dorie’s Cove Sunset” will be familiar to those who know Knapp’s work, but she always sees something new to delight her eye. Here, the sturdy, dark, solitary rock sits in the warm yellow, pink, and orange light of the setting sun spreading its reflection across the water. For Fred Poisson, serenity is found in his watercolor “Clayhead Dusk,” in which we seem to be immersed in the gentle water undulating around a single rock with the sandy bluffs of Clayhead in the background.

Earlier work by the late William Skardon reminds us of the enduring yet always changing elements of the land, sea, and sky. In watercolor and sumi ink, a structure sits on the bluffs with large boulders in foreground. This is the earliest piece in the exhibit, done on June 25, 1967, with Skardon’s characteristic sweeping lines.

Leaving the rocky shoreline, Heidi Palmer’s monotype “Butter and Eggs” sets off the delicate yellow wildflowers in the foreground against a stone wall, the carefully balanced soft grey stones are emphasized by the light, with the green meadow and play blue sea beyond.

The gallery will be open with plenty of specials and sale items for the ANNUAL HOLIDAY SHOPPING STROLL November 29th, 30th, and December 1st and on most weekends after that until Christmas.