A&E Spotlight: Nick Serratore and April Allyson Abel At Peninsula Gallery, Lewes
It’s easy to be inspired by the natural beauty of the Delmarva coast. Shimmering sunrises and sunsets illuminate over reflective bodies of water, acres of marsh reeds and grasses swaying in ocean breezes, dramatic, towering cloud banks back-lit by sparkles of lightening jitterbugging across the horizon – it’s all part of life in our little corner of the world.
We see these instances of glory, pause for a slow breath and take them into the mind - often getting lost in the thoughts that connect our psyches to mother nature. It’s all at once serene, powerful, peaceful, intimidating. We take in the spectacular beauty of the moment and then drift back into our day.
But fortunately, there are some artistically gifted people in the world who retain more than just a fleeting memory. They become inspired by the vision and they feel compelled to recreate their experience into a tangible, physical work of art from within the boundaries of their talent.
These works become homage like creations to beauty that will far outlast our interactions with them before they are cherished by future generations.
Currently, two gifted artists—and personal friends—pastel artist Nick Serratore and photographer April Allyson Abel, have joined forces to create a remarkable exhibit of just such works currently on display at the Peninsula gallery located across the canal in Lewes at 520 E. Savanah Road.
What makes this show interesting is that both artists purposefully selected several works for inspiration from their knowledge of each other’s talent. April, known for capturing her imagery at the crack of dawn, would photograph a scene that she instinctively knew Nick would find compelling artistically and Nick would then create his own interpretation of the photograph on paper in pastel. Both works end up in the show.
There’s several of them, as a matter of fact, and gallery co-owner and curator Tony Boyd-Heron has wisely and cleverly spaced them around the exhibit and teasingly created a sign suggesting that viewers try to locate the dual works. It’s one of the aspects of the show that make the exhibit so compelling—and frankly—fun.
But even without the bonus of the inspirational interaction between these two artists, the individual works on display underscore exactly what makes a well thought out, beautifully presented art exhibit so powerful.
April (who also works as exhibits coordinator and photographer for Delaware State Parks) has incorporated a wide assortment of stunning imagery from her pre-dawn prevails into nature. Every season is captured in her work with a pleasing, well selected, and often dramatic mix of intense color prints. Some monochromatic—and even the occasional black and white photograph—are included as well.
Wildlife doesn’t miss out on the walls either. April told The A&E Report Host Michael Sprouse during their interview that she is equally inspired by the birds that frequent her location shoots early in the morning. Egrets, owls, herons and more feathered friends all made the cut.
Nick Serratore has made quite a name for himself over the last fifteen years or so with his art and his ever-evolving work included in the exhibit beautifully reflects his skill and dedication to his craft.
A particularly powerful piece titled “Zephyr” is a perfect example of his artistic ability. In it, strikes of bold, russet hued color create dried dune grasses tousling against the wet sand with a sunrise breeze perfectly juxtaposed against undulant waves of blues and purples that become an ocean that gently fades into the soft cloud haze of morning sky. Was this one of the works inspired by one of April’s photographs (hint, hint) – you’ll have to view this highly recommended show for yourself to find out!
This exhibit, titled “An Hour In The Quiet” is on display at the Peninsula Gallery in Lewes through September 30. For more information about the show, including hours of operation and photographs of all the works included, visit www.peninsula-gallery.com.
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