Looking Back and Forward With Artist Christopher Engel - 27 East

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Looking Back and Forward With Artist Christopher Engel

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Christopher Engel at work in his studio. COURTESY THE ARTIST

Christopher Engel at work in his studio. COURTESY THE ARTIST

Christopher Engel,

Christopher Engel, "Mardi Gras," diptych, 2024. Mixed media on canvas, 60" x 40." COURTESY THE ARTIST

Christopher Engel,

Christopher Engel, "MO MA," 2023. Mixed media on paper, 45" x 60." COURTESY THE ARTIST

Christopher Engel,

Christopher Engel, "Prayers," 2023. Mixed media on paper, 60" x 40." COURTESY THE ARTIST

authorStaff Writer on Apr 17, 2024

“Looking Back Looking Forward, the Work of Christopher Engel” will be on view at Kramoris Gallery in Sag Harbor from May 2 to May 23, and the show opens with a reception on Saturday, May 11, from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

In “Looking Back Looking Forward,” viewers have the opportunity to see the progression and breadth of Engel’s work, a collection spanning 20 years, since relocating from New York City to Sag Harbor.

Engel’s unique artistic style blends figurative and abstract imagery, employing expressive brushstrokes and a masterful interplay of colors. Critics have drawn comparisons between Engel and esteemed artists such as George McNeil, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Robert Motherwell. However, it is his distinct expressionistic and symbolic approach that sets Engel’s work apart, as he deftly depicts the archetypal imagery of the collective unconscious, calling on his connection to Carl G. Jung, whose writing and imagery has inspired Engel since childhood and throughout his life as both an artist and an educator.

As viewers engage with Engel’s transformative art, they embark on a shared journey of metamorphosis. Through his skillful craftsmanship, Engel invites his audience to witness the extraordinary potential for change within ourselves and the world around us. In this sense, all are joining the artist on his journey to the past and an exploration of the future.

As Engel explains, “We are travelers even if we stand still, we are in constant motion. Whether we open our eyes or deep in sleep, we are witnesses and participants in the flow of images, ideas, and movements that make up our universe. From the marks on cave walls to the vibrating strips of string theory, all is connected. We are tightrope walkers moving through time, balancing what we know and what we don’t. Finding faces of our ancestors and those yet to come in the colorful patterns of fields, on the ground, and in the sky — the simple wash of rain on black roads or the call of morning birds. All the while, angels and spirits are there to point the way to understanding what it all means. The quest for meaning can be answered in this simple way — we are all made from the same things, we are all one.”

Romany Kramoris Gallery is at 41 Main Street, Sag Harbor. For details, visit kramorisgallery.com.

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