‘After the Storm’ Kristen DeFontes Solo Exhibition on view through April 30, 2020

CREATE Council for Resources to Enrich the Arts, Technology & Education (formerly the Greene County Council on the Arts) is pleased to announce a new solo exhibition, After the Storm, featuring the work of local artist Kristen DeFontes.  The exhibition will be open to the public from January 25 to April 30, 2020, with an opening reception on Saturday, January 25 from 3:00 to 5:00 pm in the CREATE’s Catskill gallery, 398 Main Street in Catskill, NY.

On August 28, 2011, Hurricane Irene swept into the rivers of Schoharie County, which flooded the region and left behind a trail of damage in its wake. Nine years later, Schoharie County-based artist Kristen DeFontes has curated a selection of objects that explore the immense effect of the extreme flooding that she witnessed personally and in her community. Using construction debris, stone, natural wood and cast bronze elements, DeFontes creates sculptures that consider the effects of not only the storm, but also personal familial conflicts and broader environmental issues. Many of these materials are salvaged from her own home, which was gravely affected by Hurricane Irene. DeFontes says of her work, “These sculptural pieces embody emotional responses and coping mechanisms. Composed using construction debris, the pieces hold power; not only in the symbolic sense, but in the way they provide a tangible link between past and present. When working on these pieces, I think about the loss and transfer of that power, and the primal need to protect it.”

Kristen DeFontes grew up on Long Island, NY and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the School of Art + Design at Purchase College where she concentrated in printmaking and sculpture. While earning her undergraduate degree, Kristen worked in exhibitions at the Neuberger Museum of Art. She earned a Master of Arts from Brooklyn College where she studied drawing under Elizabeth Murray and continued her studies in printmaking, drawing and sculpture. In 2005, Kristen moved to the Capital Region of New York and began teaching art at Voorheesville CSD.  In 2007, she and husband Michael Wells started WellSculpt Foundry, a bronze sculpture casting company. The two are raising their eight-year-old daughter together. Kristen’s work is in several private collections; she currently lives and works in Schoharie County, NY.

Marline A. Martin, Curator of the exhibition and Director of CREATE, says about the exhibition, “I am happy to present DeFontes’ work at CREATE this season. The exhibition is a surprising collection of works that challenge viewers to consider a Hurricane that greatly affected the region and how to heal from it.” The CREATE Council on the Arts invites you to attend the opening reception of this exhibit from 3:00 to 5:00 on January 25, 2020.

Image: Kristen DeFontes, 2018, Shore Up, Wood, stone, ink, oil paint, aluminum, steel, (9.5’’ x 10’’ x 4’’)

Click Here to view Kristen DeFontes’ selected works available for purchase from  her Solo Exhibition After the Storm.  For more information about After the Storm or the Catskill Gallery Program as well as all other programs and services, call 518-943-3400, gcca@greenearts.org or visit www.greenearts.org.

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