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A Transcendent Sense of Light, At Ober Gallery


A show of work by Lakeville, Conn., artist Karen Le­Sage opens on Friday, May 29, at the Ober  Gallery in Kent Barns, 6 North Main St. in Kent, Conn.

LeSage has a devoted following; her last show at the gallery sold out.

Ober said he anticipates a similarly strong response to this new show, which will have about a dozen canvases. Some continue LeSage’s study of color fields; others expand to include more nature imagery, with trees, landscapes. 

All the paintings, though, “are about light and have this transcendent Rothko-like quality,” Ober said. 

This is the seventh solo show of LeSage’s work at the gallery.

“I’m interested in three areas of work, for the most part,” Ober said. “Russian art; young up-and-coming artists from, for example, Brooklyn; and local artists that I believe in.”

Ober first saw Le­Sage’s work when it was at an early stage, in a small exhibit in Salisbury. 

“She has a vision,” he said. In those early days it hadn’t quite come together but, “I knew it would come into being — and it did. She has become the most important artist at Ober Gallery. Her work generates an excitement I have never seen, which makes her exhibits truly fun.”

LeSage is a Connecticut native who has lived/worked/studied in Boston and then New York City. 

“I eventually began spending weekends in Litchfield County,” she said. “When I moved here full-time, painting took over.”

The landscape here inspires her, especially the Berkshire mountains.  

“They provide color displays that change by the season, the day, the hour,” she said.

“I am consistently pulled toward full abstraction, but am intrigued by walking the line between worlds. I consider myself a minimalist landscape painter with expressionist elements. In art and in life, I discover a quiet power when I eliminate the non-essential.”

As she has become more confident (and successful) as an artist, she said that her process remains largely unchanged.

“No matter how much attention the work gets, my day is basically the same: Get up and go to the studio. 

“But now I get to use better paints.”

In-person visits can be made to the gallery on Fridays from 1 to 4 p.m., Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m. Social distancing recommendations will be observed. Private viewings are by appointment; contact Ober at 860-488-1963 or obergallery@gmail.com

A video virtual-tour of the exhibit and a detailed PDF of all the work is also available upon request.

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