A surfer since he was 5 years old, photographer Keith Ramsdell has always lived and worked in close proximity to the water — with his board and camera never far from him in Amagansett.
He attempts to capture his sensory experience of the beach, seizing on isolated subjects such as the granular surface of the sand, the undulations of the surf, a gnarled piece of driftwood, or the seemingly endless stretch of a dock.
His long-exposure, black-and-white seascape washes will be on view at The White Room Gallery in Bridgehampton — his first major show — alongside the work of Jim Gemake, and Bengt Hokanson and Trefny Dix, starting Friday, November 30, in “Multi is The Media.”
“Working in black and white allows Keith to detach himself from the chaotic reality of color, and enables a broader interpretation of the environment, offering up a space that can be filled by the viewer’s imagination,” an artist statement says, adding, “He relies on the essential aspects of minimalism — line, shape and texture — to form grayscale images that are affecting in their simplicity. His work represents natural elements and manmade structures in congruence, reducing these parts of the landscape to their purest form. Each image conveys an almost surreal sense of stillness and balance that cannot be disturbed.”
Gemake, a self-taught artist who lives in Water Mill, creates his multi-media work from the “discarded object,” he said. By assembling them into something new or different, there is a sense of salvation, he said, bringing them new life and new meaning through construction, destruction and reconstruction.
“Being a mixed media artist, I primarily depend on the found or discarded object to achieve the elements of color, shape and texture that are so important in my work,” Gemake said in his artist statement. “While my work is about change, I also try to bring the element of concealment and withholding to my pieces, leaving room for the imagination.”
As the unit Hokanson Dix Glass, artists Hokanson and Dix are known for their distinctive blown glass forms and mixed media sculptures influenced by contemporary Italian and Swedish glasswork, urban graffiti, world textiles, as well as forms and color patterns from nature.
“Our interest in glass as a medium stems from the visual purity of glass and its ability to both illuminate and define a form,” according to an artists’ statement. “These two dynamic interactions have always inspired us and made glass an exciting material for our explorations of color, light and form. These elements of glass — its clarity, its fluid qualities, its ability to capture color, pattern and texture — are all at play in each of our pieces.
“In much of our work, we are attempting to make, or capture, a moment in time when the glass, energized by its state of balance, or unbalance, its color, pattern, and form, expresses movement,” they said.
The show will open with a reception on Saturday, December 1, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Bridgehampton gallery, located at 2415 Main Street, and will remain on view through December 30. For more information, call (631) 237-1481 or visit thewhiteroom.gallery.