Center Gallery, Main Level:
THE FRAGILE BEE BY NANCY MACKO
Since the early 1990s, Nancy Macko has drawn upon images of the honeybee society to explore the relationships between art, science, technology, and ancient matriarchal cultures. Today, she combines elements of printmaking, digital media, photography, video, and installation to create a unique visual language. This combination of media allows her to examine and respond to issues related to eco-feminism, nature, and the importance of ancient matriarchal cultures, as well as to explore her interests in the relationships between art and technology, science, evolution, and ecology.
For the last ten years, Macko has been photographing flora using a macro lens in order to reveal the less apparent, less obvious features concealed within these beautiful specimens. She captures them from bud to bloom to seed — all manifestations of the life cycle. Her current research includes documenting native bee-attracting flora, beginning in Southern California and branching out to the Northeast and the high elevation area of the Rocky Mountains.
Originally from New York, Macko received her undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin and her graduate degrees from the University of California, Berkeley with a concentration in painting and printmaking. She has been a practicing artist since the early 1980s, producing over thirty solo exhibitions and participating in over 150 exhibitions both nationally and abroad. She has received more than 30 research and achievement awards for her art. She has traveled extensively and has had highly productive artist residencies at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Canada and the Musee d’Pont Aven in Brittany, France.
Exhibition organized through Katharine T. Carter & Associates.
A WORK OF HEART BY MATT LAUFER
A Connecticut native, Matt Laufer is a self-taught artist who paints wildlife, nature, and abstract art. After a motor vehicle accident left Matt paralyzed from the chest and shoulders down, the urge to create was unshakable. No longer having the use of his hands, he was determined to find a new way to create his art. Determination and practice led Matt to where he is today, with his first museum exhibit.
While Matt suffered physical paralysis due to his high-level spinal cord injury, he found himself, at the age of 23, psychologically paralyzed as well. The severe trauma of being crushed by a tractor-trailer left scars that went far deeper than the physical ones. Overcome by fear, anxiety, frustration, and the lack of emotional life skills needed to accept his compromises, Matt became reclusive, suffering from severe depression and a deep sense of hopelessness.
A lengthy hospitalization and several near-death experiences in 2017 brought Matt face to face with his own mortality. These experiences aroused his desire to live, and create. He returned to his love of art and has begun to flourish. Matt finds painting to be cathartic. He uses this medium to convey what otherwise would have remained silent and attempts to portray the passion of his spirit. He hopes to depict a complex range of emotion through color, texture, and symbolism.
SUNSET SCIENCE: PHOTOGRAPHY BY MICHAEL FLORIO
Connecticut native Michael Florio has a huge passion for photography, art, science, and technology. His love of these subjects has brought him through a rabbit hole of wonder and amazement. His desire to share the incredible aspects of our universe with others is captured through a dynamic study of sunsets and the fascinating reasons why we experience the glorious colors in a twilight sky.
He wishes to reignite the imagination in adults and inspire young people, whether it is through the art of photography, exploring the cosmos through a telescope, or creating an at-home science project.