Owen Gray

Owen Gray: World of Darkness, World of Light

April 26 – May 21, 2016

Reception : April 28th 5-8 pm

Closing day , May 21, Gallery Talk 3:30-4pm

      Owen Gray in informal conversations with visitors

Owen Gray’s recent paintings will be presented at the Blue Mountain Gallery in Chelsea, New York City April 26th-May 21st. World of Darkness, World of Light is Gray’s 10th solo show at the Blue Mountain Gallery, which he has been a member of since 1992.  Praised by critic Jed Perl of the New Republic for his “deft, fleet, subtly virtuosic brushwork that articulates shape and spirit with confidence and ease,” Gray presents the viewer two worlds in these paintings. The first one looks up into a vast, rich darkness that encompasses fantastical flying creatures lit brightly from below.  In the second world, the world of light, there is an emphasis on the vast sunlit world, where the open blue sky is inhabited by a dazzling array of winged creatures twirling and whirling every which way or down into the an aquatic netherworld where birds, insects, musical instruments and overturned boats inhabit a lush mysterious environment of dense vegetation.  Gray’s paintings have a Rococo panache, and are influenced and inspired by the ceilings of the Italian painter Tiepolo, as well as by Peter Brueghel, Hieronymus Bosch, and 17th century Dutch still life.

Born and raised in Wayland, Mass., Owen Gray studied as a young man at the Portland School of Art in Maine and the Swain School of Design in New Bedford, MA.  In 1975, he moved to New York and took classes at the New York Studio School, where he studied with Nicholas Carone and Leland Bell.

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“{Owen Gray’s paintings have} something of the quality of a Tiepolo ceiling in miniature, with a general sense of celebratory lunacy, all the trumpets blasting, all the balloons ascending, everything striped and beribboned and decked out for a party…”                  -Jed Perl, The New Republic  (2012)

{Gray paints} “a kind of primordial peaceable kingdom, as far from the frenetic hard-edged modernity of New York City as one could get… a Freudian never-never land where the ego lives in close touch with churning instinctual energies.”                – Ken Johnson, The New York Times (2002)


Additionally Owen Gray is in a two person show  at the Annette Fox Gallery on 838 West End Ave, 8C,  near 101st.   April 12 – through July, 2016




The opening is on April 12th 6-8 and it runs through July.


Past Exhibition

March 27th – April 21st    2012

Owen Gray’s ninth solo show at Blue Mountain Gallery illustrates two perspectives the artist has been engaged in for years. From above, you are looking down at aquatic wild life, musical instruments, overturned boats – all in the thick of a dense, tropical environment. From below, you are looking at freefalling creatures and objects of desire as they whirl every which way. Gray’s subject matter is indirectly influenced by the Italian painter Tiepolo, Pieter Brueghel, Hieronymus Bosch, and 17th-century Dutch artists.

Born and raised in Wayland, Mass., Gray has painted in Maine, Massachusetts, and New York, a true East Coast native son New Englander. When he moved to New York, he began to study with Nicholas Carone and Leland Bell at The Studio School.

Of Gray’s paintings, New York Times critic Ken Johnson wrote that “his stroke is relaxed, but exacting” and described Gray’s concerns and “all-over abstractions as a kind of primordial, peaceable kingdom, as far from the frenetic hard-edged modernity of New York City as one could get. It is also a slightly creepy and scary Freudian never-never land where the ego lives in close touch with churning instinctual energies.”

Mario Naves of The New York Observer wrote, “Mr. Gray’s symbolism has a strong spiritual subtext. Even when he paints something as mundane as a hillside covered with scrubby bushes, it’s shot through with retribution, redemption, and less assuredly, grace. This is what makes him special – there’s no separation between the dutiful naturalist and the visionary. Indeed, to call Mr. Gray a ‘visionary’ is to inflate the quiet rectitude of his fantasies.”



Website: www.owengray.net 

Blue Mountain Gallery | 530 West 25th St, 4th floor, New York, NY 10001 | Tuesday-Saturday 11AM-6PM | Phone: 646-486-4730

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