The Hudson Valley, once a glacier, offers a passage from the Adirondack Mountains to New York City and beyond, eventually feeding into the Atlantic Ocean. Inhabitants include an eclectic blend of homesteaders, healers, mystics, new world farmers and artists in search of inspiration/affordable housing, interspersed within old wealth and struggling post-industrial communities. The Hudson River is a receptacle for many incongruous elements: wilderness, tourism, nuclear and industrial waste, urban overflow, shifting oceanic tides. Other Hudson is an exhibit that reflects the convergences and divergences of this river area, through the artwork of these four distinct regional artists.
Ryder Cooley, MCLA Gallery 51 manager
JEN P. HARRIS is a painter and graphic artist who explores intersection of the familiar and the unknown through a gender-bending mixture of abstract forms, symbols and figurative imagery. Her densely-layered, richly-colored paintings and drawings suggest simultaneous narratives and the interconnected nature of space and time. Originally from Baltimore, Harris studied Art at Yale (BA), then traveled and lived in Italy, Los Angeles, India, and Brooklyn (among other places) before earning her MFA in Painting from Queens College CUNY. The way she sees, understands and represents the world has been influenced by her various lives in all of these locations. She is currently based in Hudson but remains a traveler of both inside and outside spaces. Jen P. Harris was a 2012 Fellow in Painting from the New York Foundation for the Arts. jenpharris.com
JOHN COOLEY is a sculptor and writer who lives in Chatham, New York. His lifetime work in literature and environmental studies brings a suggestion of narrative to his sculptures and assemblages. John Cooley draws inspiration from edges of roads and fields, dilapidated barns and abandoned factories. From these places that he obtains materials for his work. He delights in rich patinas created by layers of paint and varnish, and enjoys working with surfaces that have been oxidized and weathered by time. The resulting creations express the tension between past and present, the natural and the constructed, growth and decay, the rural and the urban. johncooley.blogspot.com
JACK MILLARD has been painting for many years. His background in architecture taught him to appreciate structure and spatial relations. As a result, his paintings are largely an exploration of material, surface, color, texture and form. Ranging over time from abstract and geometric shapes to skewed landscapes, his paintings also show a deep commitment to painterly brushwork. Millard's recent paintings are made by brushing acrylic lines on fiberboard. He removes the curved shapes between the lines leaving apertures to the wall. The resulting skeins of tangled brushwork and biomorphic volumes dance back and forth in illusionistic space recalling figures, tendrils, diagrams, ganglia, leaves, calligraphy and maps. Jack Millard lives and works in Chatham, NY. jackmillard.blogspot.com
CLAUDIA MCNULTY is a fine arts painter, designer, decorative artist and muralist who lives and works in Climax, NY. Much of her painting is concerned with the social and political implications of science and technology. Her illustrative paintings and drawings reference modern images, icons and logos as records of our human history and as subconscious connections to our DNA. Her interests focus on the mystery and puzzling simplicity of the shared genetic make up of living organisms; the limited code of the basic four letters that enables us to transform into complex and varied creatures. In addition to a concern with the mapping and re-engineering of biology through genetic modification, McNulty's paintings reflect her awareness that the survival of our species is threatened by an immense array of unnatural elements and pollutants. Claudia McNulty recently received the 2013 NYSCA Individual Artist Grant based on her "Porn Corn" installation proposal about Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). claudiamcnulty.com