Halsey Mckay Gallery Opens Our Eyes
BY STACEY GOERGEN
Bea, Bea, Sara Greenberger Rafferty, 2010
I have realized over time that my gallery program is intuitive,” says Rachel Uffner, of the well-respected, discerning gallery that bears her name on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. “I don’t over-intellectualize why I like art or represent certain artists, but I find a current of artists using familiar mediums in slightly different ways so you think even more about what the artists are actually commenting on.”
Curating her first show for the recently opened Halsey Mckay Gallery in East Hampton, Uffner started with five artists she represents in New York and added six more whose work she is looking at right now. She believes all of these artists are making interesting new works that relate to each other in one important way. “These artists take a painting or sculpture and flip it on end,” Uffner says. “They are almost using surrealism to alter what you think of as normal or familiar work.”
Titled “The Idea of the Thing That It Isn’t,” Uffner emphasizes that the works in this show use both stark and subtle alterations on what the viewer might expect. For example, Martin Soto Climent takes traditional canvas used for painting and drapes it with shoes and stockings, never touching the canvas with a brush; the end result is both beautiful and arresting. Roger White flirts between representation and abstraction with his paintings, creating work that, in Uffner’s words, “isn’t jolting like Climent’s work but has a subtle impact that is just as powerful.” The majority of the pieces in the exhibition, open through September 4, are being exhibited for the first time in the New York area.
This is the fourth exhibition and the first group show at Halsey Mckay, which has successfully generated interest from the local artist, dealer and collector communities. Owner-directors Hilary Schaffner and Ryan Wallace, friends of 20 years who founded the gallery in May, intend to continue using the space to introduce the East End to exciting new talents. 105 Newtown Lane, East Hampton, 604-5770
PHOTOGRAPH BY ADAM REICH (GUBBINAL)