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Artist Mary Montes Curates Exhibit To Commemorate Today’s Contemporary Painters

Sydney A. Braat

Willem de Kooning, 2015, Charcoal and Pastel on Paper, Mary Montes. (Courtesy Photo)

The Sag Harbor Whaling Museum will kick-off its 2017 season with artist Mary Montes' solo exhibition entitled de Kooning and Friends. Opening Friday, May 5 and on view through Monday, May 22, the exhibition is a passionate display of her abstract expressionistic figures of the New York School during the mid-late 20th century.

"I hope viewers will take away a sense of belonging to the East End and its cultural significance in art history," said Montes. "Stories of the masters that graced the shores of The Hamptons will come alive as they view paintings of many icons in the circle mid-twentieth century American art."

The exhibition is an ode to today's contemporary painters including Williem de Kooning, Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollack, Constantino Nivalo, and Bob Rauschenberg. All of these influential artists will make an appearance in Montes' exhibition. Montes intends to include works of the women within this circle of artists, including Lee Krasner, Elaine de Kooning, and Ruth Klinsmann. Other subjects of the show include dealers such as Leo Castelli and friends of the New York school painters who have spent time living and working on Long Island's East End.

"The inspiration for de Kooning & Friends comes from a love for fellow artists that I have connected with personally and aesthetically thru their work," she explained. "Painting comes from within. When you relate to another painter, it's an unspoken language that draws you together. This particular group of New York School artists have been a vibrant part of the East End fabric for decades."

Montes' work has been exhibited in the Lowe Art Museum, College of Arts and Science at Miami University, Andy Gato Galleries, Museum of Contemporary Art (North Miami), and private art shows in Miami Beach as well as Spectrum Art Fair during Art Basel week. Currently, Montes is represented by Quogue Gallery in Quogue, NY and Michael Findlay Gallery. She will participate in a group show curated by Peter Marcelle in June 2017.

An Opening Reception for de Kooning and Friends will be held on Saturday, May 6 from 6 to 8 p.m., and all are welcome.

The Sag Harbor Whaling Museum is located at 200 Main Street in Sag Harbor. For more information, call 631-725-0770 or visit www.sagharborwhalingmuseum.org.

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