Haynes Galleries presents “New Works: New Directions”
August 2 to August 31, 2013
Reception: Friday, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. August 2, 2013

THOMASTON, Maine — Haynes Galleries is pleased to present “New Works: New Directions,” an exciting collection of paintings from some of the freshest faces in contemporary American Realism. The show runs from Aug. 2 to Aug. 31 at 91 Main Street, Thomaston. An opening reception will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 2; the event is free and open to the public.

This broad exhibition will include a selection of works from the gallery’s newest artists — some established, some emerging — including Nicholas M. Raynolds, Grace DeVito, Bennett Vadnais, Milixa Morón, Adrian Gottlieb, Martin Arnold, Tanya Bone, Justin Hess, Jeanne Mackenzie, Michael Theise and Gail Wegdosky. In addition, new works from longtime gallery artists will also be on view.

Gallery owner Gary R. Haynes, an admirer and collector of American Realism from the last three centuries, was drawn to these artists because their work is honest, reflective and thought-provoking.

“I am attracted to these artists not just because they are skilled realists,” Haynes says. “Certainly, they have mastered the technique and the craft, but it’s also much more than that. They are capable of conveying an emotion, mood and feeling in their work. They start with an idea and they communicate it in profound ways. It’s much more than pretty pictures. Their work commands attention.”

Take, for instance, Essie’s Headdress, Seth Haverkamp’s show-stopping portrait of his daughter. His muse — a girl on the brink of adolescence — stares directly at the viewer, her expression a beguiling mix of bemused sweetness. On her head sits an unruly crown of twigs and buds about to blossom. It is an ode to growth, to potential, to adolescence. It is no wonder that Haverkamp was the People’s Choice Award in the 2013 Portrait Society of America Competition.

The exquisitely detailed paintings of Nicholas M. Raynolds beckon viewers to look more closely — at his work and at the world around them. His classical training is evident in his mastery of the craft, but as Haynes says, these are much more than pretty pictures. Whether he turns his attention to something as straightforward as a latch or as nuanced as the human figure, his work is imbued with emotion.

So, too, is Grace DeVito’s. In her hands, something as mundane as a bottle of Heinz ketchup becomes sublime. Her more traditional still lifes have an Old World feel, while her portraits are deeply insightful, making the viewer feel as though he knows the subject.

Strength and boldness emanate from the canvases of Venezuelan painter Milixa Morón, who draws inspiration from a diverse range of sources — the mythology of different cults, religions or cultures, universal symbols, psychology, historical figures, and music, to name a few. As a result, her portraits and still lifes have an almost otherworldly feel to them.

“I drive to paint these kinds of themes not only because I like them but also because I love the feeling they transmit to me,” she says. “For a while I become them. I feel their knowledge, their pain or agony, their power, their mystery.”

The thrill of “New Works: New Directions” lies in the discovery — each painting is a surprise. Each drawing is a revelation. This show compels. Excites. Mesmerizes.