February 24 - April 3
RECEPTION: Thursday, February 24
6:00pm - 8:00pm
Emergence is a memorial retrospective of abstract painter Gerald Monroe. This exhibition of small, medium and large oil
paintings – Monroe’s first at Gallery North – embodies every possible meaning of the title, Emergence. These are paintings formed from pure intensity of feeling. Each painting arises from in-the-moment narratives, personal speculation, and a long-held fascination with nature. Monroe’s abstractions derive from a decades-long dedication to Modernist abstraction, and uniformly emerge from natural sources – bodies, plant forms, passing clouds, thin rays of light, or the slow melt of a sunset seen from his Water Mill studio. The artist writes: “Every mark is a speculative act; uncertainty spurs possibilities, only to have them become mired in incoherence. I must bring method to the madness: the creation of a well-constructed picture that relies on the tendency of color, shape, texture, etc. to strike metaphorical connections to the real world of palpable space and energy.” Emergence explores the natural world and reveals how our physical experience of the world shapes and sometimes distorts our inner lives in mysterious ways.
Gerald Monroe was born in New York City in 1926. He attended classes at the Art Students League in Manhattan and graduated from the Cooper Union for Art. He then earned his doctorate in education from New York University and spent the early years of his career as a scholar and published author, known for his seminal research on the activities of the Artists Union during the Great Depression. Based in Water Mill on the East End of Long Island, Monroe exhibited widely, including solo shows at Manhattan galleries, the New Jersey State Museum and the Loeb Center at NYU, as well as group exhibitions at the Parrish Museum in Southampton, the Heckscher Museum in Huntington and Guild Hall in East
Hampton. His work can be found in many public and private collections, including the Newark Museum. Gerald Monroe died in June 2021.
This exhibition is generously sponsored by Jefferson’s Ferry, and Suffolk County’s Department of Economic Development and Planning.