The Hamptons art scene is especially strong right now with great shows on view from Quogue to Amagansett, NY. We've put together our list of top art exhibitions to see over Labor Day Weekend and into September as the fall art season begins. Expect to find a liberal mix of modern and contemporary art. Photorealism can be found in two exhibitions and portraiture and figurative also strong right now in the Hamptons art scene. Abstraction Expressionism is featured at several shows as is contemporary abstraction. While the Hamptons is a far cry from the LES, expect to find a few exhibitions that would fit right in gallery shows presented there.

Coming up in September are two distinct open studio events that provide an insider's look at art being made right now in the Hamptons. Ten artists from the Hamptons have banded together to offer the first "Abstraction Today" Studio Tour, sponsored by Ille Arts. The self-guided tour takes place on Saturday, September 9, 2017. Click here for details. The Artists Alliance of East Hampton is hosting an Open Studio Weekend featuring 20 artists who are members of the group. It will be held September 17 and 18, 2017. Click here for details.

1. Eric Firestone Gallery: “Montauk Highway: Postwar Abstraction in the Hamptons”

August 4 through September 17, 2017

East Hampton, NY

Hamptons art history is alive and vibrant in a knock-out group show at Eric Firestone Gallery. A contender for one of the strongest exhibition on the East End right now, the show presents solid art from an all-star line up, revealing art made during an acclaimed time for the artist colony that is The Hamptons. "Montauk Highway: Postwar Abstraction in the Hamptons" presents art by James Brooks, Nicolas Carone, Perle Fine, Grace Hartigan, Ibram Lassaw, Alfonso Ossorio, Charlotte Park, Esteban Vicente, Larry Zox, Manoucher Yektai, Willem de Kooning, Elaine de Kooning, Al Held and many others.

In the exhibition alcove is a focused photography portrait installation of work by Hans Namuth and Tony Vaccaro and a video produced by Gordon Hyatt, "What I Did On My Vacation." The video documents a series of Happenings staged by Allan Kaprow in the Hamptons in 1966.

Don't miss it.

Eric Firestone Gallery is located at 4 Newtown Lane, East Hampton, NY 11937. www.ericfirestonegallery.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

For more information, visit Montauk Highway: Postwar Abstraction in the Hamptons” Opens at Eric Firestone Gallery.

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“Montauk Highway: Postwar Abstraction in the Hamptons” at Eric Firestone Gallery. Courtesy of Eric Firestone Gallery.

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2. Guild Hall: “Avedon’s America”

August 12 through October 9, 2017

East Hampton, NY

Photography by Richard Avedon fills Guild Hall Museum with a series of dramatic black and white image made by the renowned American fashion and portrait photographer. The exhibition presents plenty of artists and creatives (authors, musicians, models, poets) who influenced American culture. The show also explores America's troubled racial history, the Ponca Tribe termination project, the Vietnam War and more.

The story of American politics, and its influence, can be found in the faces of the politicians including the show. (Expect to find both a younger Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton). "Avedon's America" is rounded out with slices of a variety of American lives including prisoners, gun enthusiasts, a beekeeper, surviving family members of slain civil rights workers, making for an engaging show that's both easy to look at and provides food for thought in the snapshot presented of American's journey in the last few decades.

Guild Hall is located at 158 Main St, East Hampton, NY 11937. www.guildhall.org.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"The Generals of the Daughters of the American Revolution, DAR Convention, Mayflower Hotel, Washington, D.C., October 15, 1963" by Richard Avedon. © The Richard Avedon Foundation.

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3. Ille Arts: "Billy Sullivan & Kathy Rudin"

August 26 through September 12, 2017

Amagansett, NY

Subversiveness is explored through an exhibition of photography, collage, drawings, paintings and installation of work by Billy Sullivan and Kathy Rudin. Both artists don't flinch from presenting life as they see it, especially in uncensored moments of unpolished realness.

For Billy Sullivan, the art on view presents photography capturing spontaneous moments, drawings and painted portraits culled from his life, especially times lived in the seventies in New York City. Billy Sullivan's art is curated across four walls and is meant to recall the informal way photographs and art with personal meaning are located in his studio, said curator and gallerist Sara de Luca. The sensation of looking at memories of high times, friends and unexpected moments is strong when viewing Billy Sullivan's art in the show at Ille Arts.

Kathy Rudin takes on American pop culture and mixes liberally with personal histories (which may or may not be hers) and unexpected zingers to create a bubbling stew of intrigue and surprises through collages and mixed media works. Presented in three wall installations, the work is designed to be experienced from afar as well as close and personal where hundreds of narratives can hit home and examined in relation to others positioned around them to change perception once again.

Ille Arts is located at 171 Main St, Amagansett, NY 11930. www.illearts.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

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Artwork by Kathy Rudin. Courtesy of Ille Arts.

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Artwork by Billy Sullivan. Courtesy of Ille Arts.

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4. Parrish Art Museum: “From Lens to Eye to Hand: Photorealism 1969 to Today”

August 6 through January 21, 2018

Water Mill, NY

It's an unusual sensation to stand among the spacious front galleries in the Parrish Art Museum and be surrounded by scenes of life, in such detail that it's difficult to know where to look first as if action was about to unfold elsewhere and might be missed. This is one of the experiences possible at the group show "From Lens to Eye to Hand: Photorealism 1969 to Today."

The exhibition is an ambitious one and presents a survey of genre that can raise discomfort over art's role and purpose as object, as well as the artist's influence in making the work. The show features 73 artworks from 35 artists that include Photorealism's early adopters to artists working today in the Photorealist tradition. Expect to find paintings or works on paper by Richard Estes, Robert Bechtle, Ralph Goings, Yigal OzeriRaphaella SpenceBertrand Meniel, Anthony Brunelli and others. 

The Parrish Art Museum is located at 279 Montauk Highway, Water Mill, NY 11976. www.parrishart.org.

Click here for exhibition details.

For more information, visit Parrish Art Museum Opens “From Lens To Eye To Hand: Photorealism 1969 To Today.”

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"Hotel Empire" by Richard Estes, 1987. Oil on canvas, 37 1/2 x 87 inches. Courtesy of The Parrish Art Museum.

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5. Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center: “Abstract Expressionism Behind the Iron Curtain”

August 3 through October 28, 2017

East Hampton, NY

To explore the little-known flowering of abstract expressionist painting in Soviet bloc countries during the Cold War, the exhibition presents art by five artists: Andrej Jemec, Tadeusz Kantor, Jan Kotík, Edo Murtić and Romul Nutiu. The paintings are on loan from collections in Poland, Croatia, Slovenia, Munich and New York. To provide insight into the art and artist's significance, a fully illustrated catalog was produced and features essays by Charlotta Kotík and Philip Rylands, director emeritus of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, plus contributions by prominent Eastern European scholars.

Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center is located at 830 Springs Fireplace Rd, East Hampton, NY 11937. www.stonybrook.edu/pkhouse.

Click here for exhibition details.

For more information, visit Eastern European Abstract Expressionism from the Cold War Era Opens at Pollock-Krasner House & Study Center.

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"In the Forest" by Andre Jemec, 1960. Oil on canvas, 110 x 116 cm. Moderna galerija, Ljubljana. Courtesy Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center.

"In the Forest" by Andre Jemec, 1960. Oil on canvas, 110 x 116 cm. Moderna galerija, Ljubljana. Courtesy Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center.

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6. Janet Lehr Fine Arts: “The Triumph of American Modernism” 

Through September 20, 2017

East Hampton, NY

"The Triumph of American Modernism" presents photography, paintings, drawing and mixed media works to visually explore photography's relationship to Modernism. The concept of photography as in the forefront is introduced through two 1910 photographs by Alvin Langdon Coburn featuring external views of Pittsburgh Steel Mills.

Dramatically presenting the concept to visitors after entering the gallery, the exhibition continues the thematic idea by weaving fine art photography with art mediums of paintings, drawings and more throughout the show. The idea is a fascinating one and gives the art on view another perspective to consider the art. The show includes work by Charles Demuth, Man Ray, Joseph Stella, Perle Fine, Milton Avery, John Graham, Marsden Hartley and many others.

Janet Lehr Fine Arts is located at 68 Park Place, East Hampton, NY 11937 (located in the Starbucks passageway). www.janetlehrinc.com.

For more information, visit Janet Lehr Fine Arts Presents Panel on Origins of American Modernism on August 20, 2017.

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"Composition" by Perle Fine, 1950. Sand and oil painting, 55.5 x 37.5 inches. Courtesy of Janet Lehr Fine Arts.

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7. The Fireplace Project: “Justin Adian: Second Skin”

August 18 through September 10, 2017

East Hampton, NY

Texas-born and NYC-based Justin Adian brings his three-dimensional abstract works to East Hampton in a solo show at The Fireplace Project. His soft painted sculptures are made from foam and the edges of the works are rounded, more often than not. To create his puffy wall reliefs, Adian combines multiple shaped forms to create sculptures that are akin to color block paintings. Also on view are a series of small tabletop ceramic forms that feel like sprites who have come out to play.

The Fireplace Project is located at 851 Springs Fireplace Road, East Hampton, NY 11937. www.thefireplaceproject.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

8. Sara Nightingale Gallery: "Soft Spoken" 

Through September 11, 2017

Sag Harbor, NY

"Soft Spoken" is a bit of a summer sleeper and presents a diverse pallet of mostly Hamptons artists working in contemporary abstraction. The way lines can dance and softly transform paintings and drawings into wisps rising from metaphorical mists can be found as a quality in many of the art on view. In others, florals cast in black and white provide contrast with some edge and push the theme of what speaking softly can mean. Still, even among the muted atmosphere, color plays its part through gestural paintings by Theresa Hackett and Maggie Simonelli. "Soft Spoken" features art by Roisin Batement, Margarett Garrett, Anna Church, Steve Miller, Daina Mattis and Elena Lyakir. Also on view through Labor Day Weekend are ceramic conceptual sculptures by Monica Banks that take the form of cakes. Click here to read about her art.

Sara Nightingale Gallery is located at 26 Main Street, Sag Harbor, NY 11963. www.saranightingale.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"Journal 7.17.17" by Margaret Garrett. Acrylic on linen, 51 x 66 inches. Courtesy Sara Nightingale Gallery.

"Journal 7.17.17" by Margaret Garrett. Acrylic on linen, 51 x 66 inches. Courtesy Sara Nightingale Gallery.

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"time's melt" by Elena Lyakir. Archival pigment print mounted on aluminum with non-glare plexi facemount, 30 x 45 inches, edition 12. Courtesy Sara Nightingale Gallery.

"time's melt" by Elena Lyakir. Archival pigment print mounted on aluminum with non-glare plexi facemount, 30 x 45 inches, edition 12. Courtesy Sara Nightingale Gallery.

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9. Rental Gallery: “Elsa Hansen  Oldham: New Work" and "Geoff McFetridge: Test for Positive Thinking”

September 2 through October 31, 2017

Opening Reception: Saturday, September 2 from 6 to 8 p.m.

East Hampton, NY

Pop culture gets its due in a new show opening Labor Day Weekend at Rental Gallery featuring embroidered small-scale works by Elsa Hansen Oldham and new paintings by Geoff McFetridge. Both artists work through the lens of art history and twist to it for their own purposes and for the good of the art.

Elsa Hansen Oldham's embroidered works draw upon traditional craft and decorative art to present her subversive works that dip into satire to heighten the social commentary. Her work in the show investigates fetishism, hip hop and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, according to the gallery. Geoff McFetridge's abstract works that toggle between the worlds of figuration and pattern to capture people, animals and plants in mid motion. Culling imagery from contemporary culture, McFetridge combines art with graphic design to mine the aesthetic worlds of surfing and skateboard culture and also explores the tension between what's hand-made and mass reproduction.

Rental Gallery is located at 87 Newtown Lane, East Hampton, NY 11937. www.rentalgallery.us.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"Golden Shower" by Elsa Hansen Oldham, 2017. Courtesy of Rental Gallery.

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"On Either Side of Vanishing" by Geoff McFetridge, 2017. Courtesy of Rental Gallery.

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10. Karma: “Dike Blair and Duane Hanson”

August 26 through September 10, 2017

Amagansett, NY

The two-person show of photorealism is as much about artist kinship as it is about the complimentary mix of small paintings by Dike Blair and life-size sculptures by Duane Hanson. The origin of the show is a published 1994 letter to the editor in the New York Times where Blair rises to Hanson's defense, following a dismissive review by Michael Kimmelman, also in the New York Times. In the letter, Blair counters the review by claiming Photorealism wasn't contextualized by the absence of grounding the work in the counter-cultural world lived in by the '70s photorealists as well as Hanson himself. In the exhibition press release, the letter is reproduced in its entirety.

The works on view represent variations of photorealism. The paintings by Blair and the two sculptures by Hanson draw from the commonplace and are rift with telling details but diverge from there. The new oil paintings by Dike Blair, all made this year, shows psychological tension can be created through the depiction of a stack of plastic ashtrays, a paired coffee cup and candle, or a deck of playing cards.

Dramatically offsetting the small works on wooden panel (ranging from 10 x 7 1/2 inches to 18 x 24 inches) are two life-size figurative sculptures by Hanson depicting opposite spectrums of life. Old Lading in Folding Chair, 1976, is stunning in its realism and included details of the seated woman who appears as if would look up and begin speaking when ready. The second, High School Student, 1990-1992, was a fun surprise to find leaning against the gallery wall, foot crossed, as if waiting in a hall for class to begin. Its placement among the paintings lends musing of what the student would think about finding himself waiting among art instead.

Karma is located at 249 Montauk Hwy, Amagansett, NY 11930. www.karmakarma.org.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"Old Lady in Folding Chair" by Duane Hanson, 1976. Polyester resin and fiberglass, polychromed in oil, mixed media with accessories, 48 x 47 x 36 inches. Photo by Pat Rogers.

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Both: "Untitled" by Dike Blair, 2017. Oil in wooden panel. Photo by Pat Rogers.

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11. Southampton Arts Center: "ABOUT FACE"

July 28 to September 17, 2017

Southampton, NY

Presented by the New York Academy of Art (NYAA) at the Southampton Arts Center, "ABOUT FACE" has been a crowd pleaser since opening. The show is co-curated by musician and painter Scott Avett (lead singer of The Avett Brothers) and David Kratz, NYAA president. The exhibition features a mix of painting, sculpture and photography in presenting a cross-section of portraiture that explores the way that we look at people as much as who the person is, according to SAC. The exhibition also connects thematically with the NYAA's mission to promote and preserve the tradition of figurative art within the context of the contemporary art world.

Featuring both noted and emerging artists, many having ties to the East End. The artist line up includes John Alexander, Steven Assael, Basquiat, Will Cotton, Eric Fischl, Audrey Flack, Ralph Gibson, Patty Horing, Judith Hudson, Alex Katz, Liz Markus, Alice Neel, Larry Rivers, Cindy Sherman, Dana Schutz, Randall Rosenthal and many others.

Southampton Arts Center is located at 25 Jobs Lane, Southampton, NY 11968. www.southamptonartscenter.org.

Click here for exhibition details.

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“Self-Portrait (David With Head on Pillow)” by David Kratz. Oil on canvas. Courtesy of the New York Academy of Art.

“Self-Portrait (David With Head on Pillow)” by David Kratz. Oil on canvas. Courtesy of the New York Academy of Art.

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12. RJD Gallery: “Andrea Kowch: Into the Wind”

 August 26 through October 1, 2017

Bridgehampton, NY

The solo show by Andrea Kowch is a long-awaited one by the gallery and collectors to see a new crop of paintings by one of the stars of the Bridgehampton gallery (formerly of Sag Harbor). The high-detailed paintings are labor intensive and viewers (and collectors) were not disappointed when the art was unveiled two weeks ago. For the show "Into the Wind," Kowch presents a series of small paintings that place the people in her magical realism paintings front and center. For her larger works, the appearance of a male farmer marks the first time her recurring cast of characters has extended and includes a man (typically her paintings feature a trio of dispassionate women who appear to be sisters). The show is the chance to examine her paintings up close and person. On permanent view are a series of limited edition signed prints, located in a gallery on the second floor.

Also on view is a new series of bold and colorful paintings by Columbian artist and poet Armando Valero. His figurative paintings also seem to capture a bit of the magic of dreams and portray them in narrative works for all to see.

RJD Gallery is located at 2385 Main Street, Bridgehampton, NY 11932. www.rjdgallery.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

For more information, visit Andrea Kowch Sells Out Show Before It Opens at RJD Gallery.

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"Nocturne" by Andrea Kowch. Limited Edition Print. Courtesy of RJD Gallery.

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13. Parrish Art Museum: “Platform: Clifford Ross: Light | Waves”

July 16 through October 15, 2017

Water Mill, NY

If you've driven by the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, it would be difficult to miss the rolling colorful waves by Clifford Ross, installed on the concrete exterior of the museum. The installation has been attracting stares, selfies and people stopped in wonder at the oversize panels of LED lights that simulate cresting and crashing waves since the art went live on July 16, 2017. After venturing inside the museum, Ross's art is installed in two exhibition spaces separated by a long hall that forms the spine of the museum. A second LED artwork, part of his "Digital Waves" series, is installed in the lobby and is just as compelling as the work installed outside.

Don't miss the chance to walk a bit further to see six of Ross's towering prints of photographs of hurricane waves on maple veneer. The images are based on photographs made by Ross of the ocean tossed by storms. Tethered to an assistant from the shore, the images were made of the Atlantic Ocean viewed from East Hampton. With each work a towering 12 x 19 feet and all six works forming a visual surround sound, "Hurricane Waves on Wood" is the safest way to experience the power of the ocean.

The series make up the exhibition "Clifford Ross: Light | Waves," which is this year's Parrish's Platform. The annual series has an invited artist create or install site-specific work in concert with the building's architecture and grounds of the Parrish Art Museum.

The Parrish Art Museum is located at 279 Montauk Highway, Water Mill, NY 11976. www.parrishart.org.

Click here for exhibition details.

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Clifford Ross Installation, at Parrish Art Museum’s Midsummer Party, July 2. Photo by Carl Timpone/BFA.com, Courtesy of the Parrish Art Museum.

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14. Quogue Gallery: “Salvatore Gulla | City and Shore”

August 31 through September 28, 2017

Artist Reception: Saturday, September 9 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Quogue, NY

Born in the South Bronx, Salvatore Gulla has been painting since 1947. A student of Reginald Marsh, Morris Kantor and Vaclav Vitlacyl, his abstract paintings retain a relationship with the scenes that inspired them. Working in East Hampton and New York City for the last 25 years, this is his second solo show at the Quogue Gallery who is championing his sensitive watercolors and expressionistic abstractions.

The exhibition presents paintings by Gulla, many in muted colors, that conjure the sensation of peaceful days spent by the sea or the subtle energy found radiating from New York City skyscrapers. Mark making is an important element in these paintings as are expressive brush strokes that create a tension between.

Quogue Gallery is located at 44 Quogue St, Quogue, NY 11959. www.quoguegallery.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"Serene Structure #3" by Salvatore Gulla, 2007. Oil on canvas, 44 x 44 inches. Courtesy of The Quogue Gallery.

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15. The Drawing Room: "Mary Ellen Bartley: Reading Grey Gardens"

September 8 to October 15, 2017

East Hampton, NY

Photographer Mary Ellen Bartley has turned her lens to create portraits of books from the personal library of the Beale family of Grey Gardens Fame, notably “Little” Edie Bouvier Beale, and her mother “Big” Edie—relatives of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Given access to the books as they were about to be relocated from the now renovated home, "Reading Grey Gardens" features photographs of over 50 books distressed by prolonged exposure to sea air bearing the scars of the riches-to-rags trajectory of the Bouvier-Beales. The images of the book covers are each photographed on a crisp grey background heightening the sometimes battered, frayed or otherwise skewed condition of the book that conceptually mirrors the lifestyle descent from polished wealth to impoverished neglect experienced by two women.

The Drawing Room is located at 66 Newtown Lane, East Hampton, NY 11937. www.drawingroom-gallery.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"Cats" (Reading Grey Gardens) by Mary Ellen Bartley, 2017. Archival pigment print, 18 3/4 x 15 inches (image), 20 3/4 x 17 inches (sheet), Edition of 7. Courtesy The Drawing Room.

"Cats" (Reading Grey Gardens) by Mary Ellen Bartley, 2017. Archival pigment print, 18 3/4 x 15 inches (image), 20 3/4 x 17 inches (sheet), Edition of 7. Courtesy The Drawing Room.

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"Red Cloth Cover (Reading Grey Gardens)" by Mary Ellen Bartley, 2017. Archival pigment print, 18 3/4 x 15 inches (image), 20 3/4 x 17 inches (sheet), Edition of 7. Courtesy The Drawing Room.

"Red Cloth Cover (Reading Grey Gardens)" by Mary Ellen Bartley, 2017. Archival pigment print,
18 3/4 x 15 inches (image), 20 3/4 x 17 inches (sheet), Edition of 7. Courtesy The Drawing Room.

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16. Dan Flavin Art Institute: “Mary Heilmann: Painting Pictures”

June 29, 2017 to May 27, 2018

It's rare to see a solo show of Mary Heilmann's work on the East End so the exhibition at Dia's Dan Flavin Art Institute is the perfect chance to see a body of work by Heilmann. The show presents art that represents key moments in Heilmann’s practice. The show presents ceramics and early paintings from the 1970s and 1980s, when Heilmann began to visit the East End and before she set up her Bridgehampton studio in 1999. The show includes several paintings that have not been exhibited previously.  To read a review of the show by James Croak for Hamptons Art Hub, click here.

Dan Flavin Art Institute is locate at 23 Corwith Avenue, Bridgehampton, NY 11932. www.diaart.org.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"Mary Heilmann," installation view. The Dan Flavin Art Institute, Bridgehampton, New York. © Mary Heilmann. Photo: Bill Jacobson Studio, New York. Courtesy Dia Art Foundation, New York.

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17. Art Space 98: "Rosemarie Schiller: Walking The Walk"

September 8 to October 9, 2017

Artist Reception: Saturday, September 9, 2017 from 5 to 7 p.m.

East Hampton, NY

Art Space 98 gallerist Rosemarie Schiller presents a solo show of her art in "Walking The Walk." Designed as a gallery wide site-specific installation, the work is a commentary and exploration on migration and immigrant. Working in smoke-fired clay, the show features canvas panel with text, pastel drawings and her signature figurative "masks" forming an orchestra of individuals expressing emotions.

Rosemarie Schiller's art explore inner space, the human spirit and its transformation with time, according to her artist statement. Her work also explores what happens when human limits are tested and boundaries pushed.

Schiller's art was shown previously at Art Space 98 in a two-person show last year with Thomas Bühler, her husband and co-gallery owner. In addition, Schiller's art has been exhibited at The Broome Street Gallery, The Pen and Brush Gallery and 55 Mercer Gallery in New York and has exhibited nationally.

Art Space 98 is located at 98 Newtown Lane, East Hampton, NY 11937. www.artspace98.com.

Click here for exhibition details.

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"Walking the Walk" by Rosemarie Schiller. Courtesy of Art Space 98.

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Copyright 2017 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.

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