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arts & leisure

Jane Blake and Carolyn Duke 'Color'

Jane Blake, “Cadenza,” 15” x 13 1/2”, dyes on silk, 2013
Contributed photos

September 6, 2013

Jane Blake’s highly saturated silk paintings will be exhibited side-by-side with the lustrous Raku ceramics of Carolyn Duke in a show titled “Color," which will open with a reception on Friday, September 6 from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Alliance Gallery at the Delaware Arts Center in Narrowsburg. The exhibit will be on view through September 28.

“Color is essential to my work,” said artist Jane Blake. “I have been engaged with the luminescence of dyes on silk for most of my life as an artist.” She has recently begun marking into the silk with oil pastel, and is interested in the way the two mediums function together.

“The color and forms of Carolyn Duke’s pottery play off these elements in my work,” Blake said, “creating a dialog between three dimensions and two dimensions.”

Blake was born in England and studied fine art in at the Oxford School of Art and in Paris at the Academie Julien and the Atelier André Lhote. After moving to New York City, she painted fabric for theater, film and fashion and found herself wanting to bring color and life into the urban context. That was when she began to conceptualize color and dyes on cloth as painting.

A hand-builder who works primarily with pinch pots, potter Carolyn Duke works in her Roscoe, NY studio with a view of the woods and gardens. “My inspiration has always come from nature, looking to the patterns and rhythms I see and can bring to my work,” she says.

The unpredictable process of Raku is Duke’s favorite way of building and firing. “If all goes well, the high color and luster finish on the piece is the reward of the firing,” she says.

Originally from New Jersey, Duke spent much of her childhood walking the beaches and boardwalks, collecting shells, sea glass and treasures on the beach. She moved to New York and took classes in design, color, drawing, and painting at The School of Visual Arts and The Art Students League. “Working in clay provided me with the earth connection I had been looking for,” she said.

Free and open to the public, the exhibit is sponsored by the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance, the Arts Council for Sullivan County, NY, and is made possible in part by a grant from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Alliance Gallery is located at the Delaware Arts Center at 37 Main Street, Narrowsburg, NY. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information about the exhibit call 845/252-7576 or visit