Octopus’s Garden

Kenise Barnes Fine Art

Jul. 13, 2024 - Aug. 25, 2024

7 Fulling Lane
Kent, 06757
PHONE 860 592-0220


Kenise Barnes Fine Art is pleased to announce an exhibition featuring four artists whose work is connected by an interest in the natural world, and in artificiality that mimics and expands the vocabulary of observation.

Envisioning the future, where technology will be indistinguishable from life, Peter Hamlin uses painting, drawing, printmaking, and prefabricated objects informed by elements of storytelling and mythmaking. Hamlin’s compositions blend fantasy and science. His paintings breathe with awareness in vibrant, synthetic colors, layers, and delineated systems. Blurring the boundaries between the artificial and organic, the nefarious, benevolent, and benign, Hamlin constructs environments where nanopeople, robots, cyborg plants, and curious synthetic organisms live their lives. Humor and playfulness hybridize in these ecosystems where multiple outcomes to this destiny manifest through color, pattern, and line. As technologies are radically changing how humans experience the world, Hamlin’s work creates a place for exploration of how we adapt as a species, determine our future, and prepare for what’s to come.

Peter Hamlin’s work has been shown throughout the US and in England. His illustrations, and graphics for The Associated Press frequently contribute to digital storytelling efforts on multiple platforms. Hamlin earned his BFA in Illustration, Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, CA and his MFA in Painting, Lehman College, The City University of New York, Bronx, NY. Hamlin has been represented by the gallery since 2016.The artist lives and works in New York City.

In her new Soul Flowers series, Michiyo Ihara invites viewers into a world where a plant’s delicate beauty intertwines with the human spirit’s ever-changing nature. Through meticulously crafted pen drawings, Ihara creates a visual narrative that explores the profound connection between the fleeting moments of blossoming flowers and the evolving essence of the soul. The series is a window into the artist’s own soul world, where each piece is a testament to existence’s dynamic nature. Just as flowers undergo various growth and transformation stages, the soul experiences a continuous journey of renewal and self-discovery. Ihara’s drawing captures this essence revealing life’s inherent beauty and fragility. Soul Flowers combines creativity, introspection, and a deep appreciation for the natural world, perpetual growth, resilience, and metamorphosis.

Ihara’s work has been shown throughout the US and Japan. Michiyo Ihara was educated at B-zemi Schooling System, Contemporary Art Course, Yokohama, Japan and Saga Art College, Visual Design Course, Kyoto, Japan. Ihara has been represented by the gallery since 2007. The artist lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

For Catherine Latson the building blocks of the natural world are endlessly interesting. No ocean or forest is bereft of ideas. Inspired by the macro- and microstructures of living organisms and the motion of a water-bound world, her current work explores forms that blur the lines between animal and plant, realism and fantasy, sculpture, and specimen. While materials are simple (cotton embroidery floss and wire), construction is mid-bindingly complex and entails thousands of pieces, and countless hours of hand whipping and knotting. Each “specimen” piece aims to reimagine the gracefulness, mystery, and complexity of a water-bound organism in motion.

Catherine Latson’s work has been featured in Macy’s Flower Show, New York, NY and Philadelphia, PA,

Architectural Digest Home Design Show, New York, NY, Southampton Design and Trade Show House, Southampton, NY, American Craft Magazine, and The New York Times, The Journal News to name a few. She was most recently awarded a public art commission for the US Embassy, Kampala, Uganda, US State Department. Latson earned her BA, Biology / Studio Arts, Macalester College, St Paul, MN. Latson has been represented by the gallery since 2018. The artist lives and works on the North Fork of Long Island, NY.

Julie Maren has been focused on her “Biophilia” installation artwork for the past several years. These installations are both wall sculpture and three-dimensional paintings and translate the omnipresent dot patterns into expansive, multidimensional sculptural arrangements of color and pattern. The work sets up a dichotomy by using natural materials, such as acorn tops, mica, and minerals in contrast with synthetic, often electric paint colors, glass beads or glitter. In each work, hundreds of inventively varied small components are gathered in graceful compositions setting up a dialogue between microscopic and macroscopic perspectives. These wall installations are transformed by light, their glinting elements and shadows becoming integral parts of the artwork.

Julie Maren’s work has been shown extensively in the US, Spain, India, and New Zealand. She has been awarded artist residencies at Weir Farm Art Center, Wilton, CT, Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT, The Valley School, International Sculpture Symposium, Bangalore, India, Tareitanga International Sculpture Symposium, Wellington, New Zealand, MARBLE/marble Stone Carving Symposium, Marble, CO and received awards from Boulder Arts Commission Project Grant for Vagina China, The Trust for Public Land, NEA panel, Nome Park, Aurora, City of Longmont Art in Public Places, to name a few.

Maren has illustrated two children’s books for Dial/Penguin Books. Maren, co-founder of The Women’s Art League, was featured in a short film with Judy Chicago, “The Famous Women Dinner Service: In Conversation with Contemporary Art” by the Yale Center for British Art, film by Jonathan Law and Hana Leaper for British Art Studies journal, published by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art and the Yale Center for British Art. Julie Maren earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Maren has been represented by the gallery since 2019. The artist lives and works in Boulder, CO.

Please contact Lani Holloway, Associate Director, [email protected], 860 560 3085 with inquires or to arrange a preview of the exhibition.

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