An Eye For Quality: Long Island’s Graphic Eye Gallery
The Long Island art scene offers a diverse mixture of influences, mediums and philosophies. A great microcosm of the local arts can be found at Graphic Eye Gallery, located at 402 Main Street in Port Washington. This nonprofit, artist-run gallery is one of Long Island’s oldest art co-ops, running since 1974 when Graphic Eye was established as a print gallery.
Today, print media is still a major focus of Graphic Eye, with new applicants to the cooperative submitting work on paper to a jury for evaluation. One or more shows a year emphasize work on paper, but other shows include installations, computer-based art, and mixed media work.
Graphic Eye’s member artists have many different approaches; everything from digital photography to abstract painting. Member Judy Cooperman uses photography to address the issue of beauty and society. Her images include a series on senior women who, in Cooperman’s words, “continue to succumb to images of beauty.” Cooperman’s digital print work includes candid photography and still-lifes of beauty products that are almost surreal images thanks to her excellent composition.
Member Babs Kent goes in a more traditional direction with beautiful pastel landscapes. Her work entitled “Spring Garden” shows a colorful array of wild flowers and plants. The work has an interesting melancholy edge to it thanks to the sky behind the colors, which seems blue, but darkening around the edges as though a storm might be brewing.
Marion Klein is a member who does quite colorful and upbeat work. Her monotypes “Plowed Field,” “New York” and “Dining Room With Orange Ceiling” are full of life and energy. In particular, “Dining Room” is exuberant, full of beautiful orange and red hues. These images, far from being photorealistic, have a unique and exaggerated style, they are quite memorable.
The digital prints of Anna London are quite abstract and unique. The multicolored “Rhythms” features a blue grid with warm, curving colors over the top, making this print seem multi-dimensional. Her work “Squares 3” features a field of graduating greens underneath another field of opposing, but muted reddish tones.
Even at a glance, it’s easy to see that Graphic Eye Gallery artists represent a good range of expression and thought-provoking work. The permanent collection by member artists is large, and the shows are not limited to just exhibitions of new work. Graphic Eye also holds educational and outreach programs. Artists who are high school graduates are eligible for the Aida Wheaton Memorial Scholarship, and the program “Sundays At The Gallery” offers demonstrations and lectures to the public.
Graphic Eye Gallery is accessible from the Long Island Expressway 495. Take exit 36 and go north on Searington Road, which becomes Port Washington Boulevard. Turn left on Main Street for one and a quarter miles. You can also contact them about upcoming events by calling (516) 883-9668. Those who enjoy the arts, or are curious about Long Island artists in particular should definitely pay a visit to Graphic Eye.