SARAH LAMB & EDWARD MINOFF: NOSTALGIC VIEWS
Sarah Lamb and Edward Minoff debut new still life and oceanscape scenes at Cavalier Galleries in New York.
In one of Sarah Lamb’s new works, Crabs, a pair of Dungeness crabs sit on a plate. It’s hard to tell if they are alive, or if this is their post-boil cool-down before dinner. Either way, you can almost taste the ocean.
In one of Edward Minoff’s new works, Fossil, a foam-tipped wave crashes in a rolling cascade on a beach. You can almost smell the ocean.
Although both artists have painted aspects of the ocean here, their new joint show at Cavalier Galleries in New York City will cover much more as they weave larger themes—including nostalgia, the anatomy of waves and vintage objects—into and out of their work. The show, Masters of Contemporary Realism, opens October 17.
For Lamb, she finds her inspiration in everyday life. “For this show, I have a selection of paintings of large, antique weather
vanes,” she says. “Good friends of mine have an exquisite collection from the 19th century and are generous enough to let me borrow them…I’m drawn to their wonderful patina— a lot of these old weather vanes have been gilded and regilded over the years. Gold leaf over copper verdigris is a beautiful effect and really fun to capture in paint.”
All of the works are painted under artificial light, which she finds more suitable to her painting style and the mood of her works. “The artificial light adds more contrast and chroma to the lights and darks. The weather vanes are dynamic and theatrical so the artificial light suits the subjects,” Lamb says. “I always paint from life—even if the subject is going to die on me in a few days. It is kind of a thrill to try and capture something in paint before it expires...the petals will wilt, birds start to smell and cheese grows a furry layer on top.”
Minoff, who says Lamb’s work is a brilliant inspiration to him and filled with “dynamic brushwork and bold color,” will almost exclusively explore the ocean, including a major new, and still incomplete, triptych that will anchor his half of the show. “Each work relates to it in some way and it will be fun to see if viewers are able to make the connections. I myself am still trying to understand how certain studies relate. In some cases it is quite apparent, however, in others it is indirect,” Minoff says. “All of my paintings are explorations— meditations on a theme through which I learn, process and better understand my subject, which is the ocean.”
Why waves, though? Minoff says it all comes down to energy. “At their most basic level, waves, energy transmitted through physical space, permeate our existence: We think of sound, light, even our own beating hearts as waves,” he says. “My paintings attempt to almost sculpturally construct waves as I understand them. Given a literacy in the basic elements, I try to mold and occasionally warp them into my vision while maintaining credibility. The show is, in some ways, about process. I spent one month painting every day on the beach, which allowed me to create a very immediate feedback loop and to compare different conditions—winds, light, tides, currents, etc.—on the same subject. At the end of that month, I reviewed my studies and began developing the triptych, which is partially based on a particular morning after a fierce storm had passed, leaving days of heavy surf in its wake and a subdued warm light emerging past sweeping clouds. [The new pieces] allow me to bend my understanding of real phenomenon to create a dramatic quality that expresses my own vision: more a feeling or sense of the ocean than a literal reproduction of it.”
1Sarah Lamb,Crabs, oil on linen, 12 x 23"2Sarah Lamb, Antique Grasshopper Weathervane, oil on linen, 34 x 47"
3Edward Minoff, Fossil, oil and 23k gold on linen on panel, 24 x 48"4Edward Minoff, ConvergenceNo. 2, oil on linen on panel, 8 x 24"