May 23, 2002 – New oil and mixed media paintings by St. Croix artist Gerville Rene Larsen are showcased in an exhibition that opens with a meet-the-artist reception Friday evening at the Walsh Metal Works Gallery.
Larsen has titled this collection "space between" — with the quotation marks and boldface specified. The works — more than a dozen paintings and a few framed "sculptural follies" — are "predominantly abstract with some figurist references," the artist says, adding that this latest collection continues to define his artistic voice.
His museum-quality paintings explore an emotional flight of fancy and are presented in a large format — the largest is 10 by 4 feet, the smallest, 46 by 12 inches. Each image was created "to capture a moment or tell a story," he says. Prices range from the hundreds to the thousands of dollars.
"We all at some time or another have seen someone and felt a strong sense of attraction and desire, stirring deep within us an emotional response," Larsen says. "When this occurs, our bodies start to tingle and may even become animated and warm all over. Our minds then start to imagine and fantasize about the moment when we connect with that individual, which becomes the point that begins to erode the 'space between.'
"Through vibrant colors, textures and 3-D elements fused on each canvas, I begin to capture these specific moments of emotional fantasy, eroticism and sensuality."
Larsen, a fifth generation Crucian, apprenticed at the St. Croix School of the Arts before going on to earn an architectural degree from Cornell University, where he also continued his art studies. This is his third solo show on island in the last two years. His work has been selected to represent the Virgin Islands in biennial exhibitions at museums in Santo Domingo and in Cuenca, Equador. His work is in private collections and at the Maytte Reed African Heritage Center in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Friday's reception, with beverages and hors d'oeuvres, is from 6 to 9:30 p.m. in the gallery, located at 14-A Peter's Rest. The show will hang through June 7. Galley hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, and by appointment. Call 773-8169 for more information.
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