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In photographs that whisper and glow, Cig Harvey’s latest project “Gardening At Night” is being exhibited at Robert Klein Gallery on Newbury Street and at their satellite, Ars Libri, in Boston’s SoWa gallery district through June 13, 2015. With lush color photographs, gently mesmerizing “videographs” and playfully crafted miniature embroideries, Harvey quietly insists that the ordinary business of living is, in fact, extraordinary. Her enchanting imagery waltzes us right into summer.
Using her home territory in Maine as backdrops and her family, friends and self as subjects, Harvey hones in on the minutiae and moments we are apt to overlook, urging us to linger with wonder. Her alchemy includes richly hued natural environments, girls, women and even dogs in reverie, the use of selective focus, uncluttered composition, palpable textural detail and mindful framing. Any one of these elements could skirt into cloying territory, but Harvey veers from the saccharin. Despite being unabashedly romantic, her images are insistently grounded in authenticity.
With a gift for expressive palettes ranging from the vibrant to the subdued, Harvey’s viewpoints vary from the focal, such as the discovery of a fallen bird’s nest, to the expansive, such as a nighttime field of fireflies. This diversity of perspectives, along with her distinctive use of light and dark counterpoints, convey Harvey’s exalting message. I find Harvey’s dusk and nighttime images especially sensuous and transporting – their luminosity imparts a stillness that allows my mind and spirit to soar.
“Gardening At Night” is also Harvey’s latest book, chronicling her life in rural Maine with exhibited (and other) photographs, accompanied by her imaginative prose. An inviting way to savor Harvey’s complete series, signed copies of the book are available at Robert Klein Gallery. In addition to her photographs on exhibit, Harvey’s embroideries at Ars Libri and “videographs” (backlit images in which an element like clouds are in motion) at both galleries offer further enticement to those craving a little night magic in their lives.
For more information about these shows, go to: http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs156/1101527907963/archive/1120861523887.html
Feature Image: “The Screen Door, Warren, Maine, 2013” by Cig Harvey (courtesy of the artist and Robert Klein Gallery, Boston)