Robert Stark Retrospective at the AFA Gallery and ArtWorks

The Robert Stark Retrospective, a retrospective exhibition of the works of painter Robert Starks, opens at ArtWorks Gallery & Studio and the AFA Gallery in Scranton on October 5, 2012, from 6-9 PM and runs through October 27.  The galleries are located at 503 Lackawanna Avenue and 514 Lackawanna Avenue respectively.  In addition, Robert Stark will recreate his studio at The Linder Gallery at Keystone College in La Plume, Pa, with a multi-media exhibit entitled Robert Stark: Inside the Studio.  Keystone will host a reception on Sunday, October 28, from 4-6 PM.  All events are open to the public.

Robert Stark is an artist of international prominence who has had solo exhibitions at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Phillips Collection, the Cheekwood Fine Arts Center, and the Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art.  His work on display at AFA Gallery, ArtWorks Gallery & Studio, and The Linder Gallery at Keystone College will allow the public to see only what very few have- the genius vision behind an artist that has defined the American landscape for 40 years.

“Selecting work from Robert Stark’s studio for this show has been one of the hardest but most pleasurable experiences,” said Tom Noone, Vice-President of AFA Gallery and Co-curator of the retrospective.  “His studio is expansive. You have the opportunity to step away from the work and view it exactly the way he did while he was painting.  The most fascinating thing about his work, however, is that even though he is surrounded by plenty of privileged views, he carefully returns to a specific landscape and presents it to you as if it were for the very first time.”

The concept for Stark’s retrospective originated in 2010 as a collaborative exhibit in two venues, ArtWorks and the AFA Gallery.   The exhibit is an in-depth study of a productive and diverse career during which Stark painted landscapes in styles as varied as pointillism, abstraction, realism and minimalism.

The Linder Gallery at Keystone College will present a multi-media exhibit by Stark from October 28 through November 30.  The exhibition, Robert Stark: Inside the Studio, features a recreation of the artist’s Union Dale studio, and provides an educational look into the workings of an artist’s creative space.  The exhibit will also feature paintings, drawings, photographs and prints from Stark’s 40-year career.

When asked about his work, Stark said, “My daily work relies on chance and surprise, intuition and mistakes, recovery, exploration and willingness to let go – sometimes painting out favorite passages in order to rebuild on a level field.  Terrible failures offer more than easy and charming successes.  There needs to be an edge – elements that defy, create questions, offer doubt.  That is what my friend Henry describes as ‘a taste of the fang’.”

The full force of Stark’s vision, in works both monumental and small and a few surprises along the way, is sure to leave an indelible mark in Northeast Pennsylvania for years to come.


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