Pastoral Outing Paintings

Lake View Dusk, 2004, Oil on canvas, 30" x 50"

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Adam Baumgold Gallery presents the second New York solo exhibition by Colin Brant, "Pastoral Outing." These idiosyncratic oil paintings imagine an excursion of civilized society into a park-like Arcadian setting.

People, animals and birds are dwarfed by their pleasant environment as they appear in little vignettes. Scholars discuss important ideas and smoke pipes, bathers dip in reflective pools and animals seem aloof, but unafraid. In "Ladies of the Loch," for example, several women cavort to the sound of a guitar on the far side of a pond, while in the foreground an owl and a chipmunk exchange wary glances.

Brant constructs the paintings with an attention to detail that recalls the work of 19th century American primitive painters, a reference that gives them a feeling of nostalgia or time lost. "He captures the simple, vernacular coherence and eccentricities of this tradition, especially with his use of perspective, the scenes within scenes, and the shifts within depth of field. There is a stillness to these paintings which invites reverie, and unhurried exploration of his forests, fields, lakes, grottos, and mountains. As viewers, we share in the adventures of travellers as they journey and rest through these pastoral constructions."1 Brant's work proposes a naive, fool's paradise world that raises questions about our relationship to nature and utopian ideals.

Colin Brant lives and works in New York City. He is the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts grant, and a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award in painting.

The gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday 11:00-5:30 PM.