Father And Son Artists Explore Similar Themes In Different Ways - 27 East

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Father And Son Artists Explore Similar Themes In Different Ways

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"Bodhisattva" by Christopher Engel

"The Searchers" by Franklin Engel.

authorStaff Writer on Jul 22, 2019

There is a tradition of artist families that carry on the work of the generations that came before. In the exhibition “Searchers + Messengers,” opening Thursday, July 25, at Romany Kramoris Gallery in Sag Harbor, the work of Franklin Engel, father, and Christopher Engel, son, follows in this tradition. In this collection of work, abstract and figurative images reveal a connection of both artists’ desires to understand the mystery and complexity of who we are, how we got here, and where we are going. Both artists gather their inspiration from similar muses— the difference is their interpretation.

In this show, Franklin Engel has conjured up abstract paintings on aged, wooden planes, collaging ceramic, wood, and stones with hidden texts, symbols, and gestures reminiscent of cave paintings and early astronomical drawings.

“We are constantly searching for symbols and images, past and present, to catch a glimpse of the universe that holds us all,” said Franklin Engel.

The same spirits speak to his son, Christopher Engel in his “Messengers” series, depicted by eternal figures surrounded by symbols, text, and collaged images. With a bold use of color and brushs strokes, Christopher Engel’s “messengers” take the shape of angels, prophets, monks, nuns, rabbis, shaman, teachers, spirits, and ancestors. These works are “portraits” of those who, “summoned or not,” as Carl G. Jung has stated, “are present.”

“These figures appear in every culture in different forms, with the same message,” said Christopher Engel. “We are only passing through this life momentarily yet we are each part of something that never ends. We are not alone, we are part of the universe.”

“Searchers + Messengers” opens with a reception on Saturday, August 3, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at Romany Kramoris Gallery, 41 Main Street, Sag Harbor. The show runs through August 15. For details call 631-725-2499 or visit kramorisgallery.com.

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