For artist Kathy Tangney both water — oceans, rivers, lakes — and watercolors (the paints) are uncontrollable. She loves the challenge of trying to capture the former with the latter.
Her final products, her works depicting rivers, marshes and the ocean, will be on display through December in an exhibit aptly named “Water,” which will be held at the Sage Gallery...A Fine Art and Meaphysical Meeting Place in Manchester.
“Painting water is, for the moment, what I love doing the most,” Tangney said.
She always goes on site to paint these works. In the collection there are paintings of the marshes in Hampton, the crashing surf in New Castle, and even the water at Livingston Park in Manchester. Tangney said she is not attempting to depict reality but that her work is more impressionistic and often conveys the emotions she feels during the experience.
Then there is also the challenge.
“Water can be a very difficult thing to capture with watercolors,” Tangney said. “Watercolors can be uncontrollable but so can oceans. It is hard to be satisfied with the end product. But when you are, it is an amazing feeling of accomplishment.”
Tangney said her fellow artists often ask her how she can paint water with watercolors. She said she has learned a few tricks. She tips the canvas upside down and paints from back to front, painting from the back of the wave. Since the crashing part of the wave is often white, which is the color of the canvas and not a color often painted in watercolors, Tangney must get the shape by painting around the non-color. Her explanation sheds some light on the difficulty of her assignment.
In the exhibit she has 11 works on display, although she wasn’t initially sure all of them would fit. She has some very large paintings of Lake Winnipesaukee in particular. One is called “Retreat” and shows a vast expanse of frozen lake with a little house in the distance.
Tangney was asked to exhibit at Sage Gallery by its owner, Janice Donnelly. Tangney said they knew each other through their mutual involvement with the Manchester Artists Association, of which Donnelly is a past president.
For her part, Donnelly said Tangney is very innovative in her work. She noted Tangney isn’t confined to canvas and has paintings on boxes, paper and other media.
“She is exciting,” Donnelly said. “She has taught in public schools and, personally, she has great character.”
There will be an opening reception for the exhibit on Friday, Dec. 9, from 5 to 9 p.m. Tangney will be there and there will also be seasonal singing by Sandra Colwell and a metaphysical reading by Andrea Klim. Tangney said she has never exhibited in a gallery quite like Sage Gallery.
“I’ve never had much to do with the metaphysical side,” Tangney said. “But I am very curious to see what kind of patrons there will be. So far it has been a great experience.”
Tangney said she is happy that there is a new gallery in the area and especially one that has a different take on art and life. She said so far she has heard great things, as people have been curious.
Donnelly said 60 to 100 people attended the first opening event for the gallery, a few months ago. At the second event, after the initial excitement had time to wane, there were still more than 50 people, she said.
“People come to relax, talk and enjoy,” Tangney said.
There are five exhibit rooms in the gallery and there is a feature exhibit, which runs four weeks, a group exhibit that runs six weeks and another group exhibit that runs two months, which means there is something new every two weeks. Donnelly said she now has close to 30 artists.