Sue Katz Exhibit Coming To Gallery A3

Transfixed by Sue Kattz (2016). Photo: Gallery A3

Source: Gallery A3

With CONSTELLATIONS, a 20-year anniversary and retrospective exhibition with clusters of verbal and visual constructs, A3 founding member Sue Katz looks back on two decades at Gallery A3. Some of the mixed media works date from the earliest days of this cooperative contemporary art gallery, while others were completed late in 2021, and have not been shown previously.

Katz devotes one wall of the gallery space to a retrospective of her mixed media work using encaustic, which is composed of beeswax, resin, and pigment. She melts the wax to apply layers of color and frequently incorporates found objects. She then uses a heat gun to fuse all layers together into richly textured translucent surfaces and elegantly geometric compositions.  “My favorite color is a rusty red-brown,” she says, “and my favorite found objects are old, rusted pieces of metal.”

Along the other wall of the gallery, she is exhibiting “signs”—which she describes as a body of work using words to signal injustices in our world or to write about love in our lives. “I started using words after 9/11, when I went to New York: all over lower Manhattan were handmade signs saying, ‘Love is the answer.’ I thought that was foolish, so I made art that also said, ‘Love is not enough,’” she explains. More recently, she has made protest signs and relishes the opportunity to speak out.

Each work—whether dating from 20 years ago or completed last month—is what Katz calls a constellation: a cluster of ideas and materials forming a composition. They also reveal how she thinks and sees and works in her studio, with disparate parts and pieces all coming together to take shape and “fit” snugly like a puzzle.  “Family, generations, relationships all wiggle their way into my consciousness saying, ‘Hello!’” she says.  

Art Forum Online and Expanded Online Presence

In an Art Forum Online on Thursday, February 17 at 7:30 p.m., Katz will discuss various themes in her work. These include her use of found objects collected through years of dumpster diving, searching woods and beaches, and gifts from friends who know her fondness for rusty metal and weathered wood. Other themes in her work include combining photographs of water with mixed media and abstract images to create diptychs or triptychs, and exploring the balance of circles and squares, based on the theory of proportion in Leonardo da Vinci’s drawing Vitruvian Man. Katz also will invite several other artists to discuss themes in their work, and then welcome questions and discussion. 

Visit the gallery website for information and to register for the online event, which is free and open to the public. This program is supported in part by a grant from the Amherst Cultural Council, a local agency supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

Gallery A3 is located at 28 Amity Street in Amherst. While Gallery A3 has reduced hours for in-person viewing in February, it is expanding its online presence. CONSTELLATIONS can be viewed in an online gallery and in an Instagram exhibit that will be continually updated with daily Instagram postings. In addition, the gallery will offer a virtual tour of the exhibition.

Vitruvian Dance (2021) by Sue Katz. Photo: Gallery A3

The Wall by Sue Katz (2005). Photo: Gallery A3
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