Eric Dever: The Rose Chapel
Frank and Gertrude Kaiser Art Gallery at Molloy College
Above: Eric Dever, NSIBTW 44-5, 2014. Oil on linen, 72 x 144 inches. Courtesy Berry Campbell Gallery, New York.
Above: Eric Dever, NSIBTW 44-5, 2014. Oil on linen, 72 x 144 inches. Courtesy Berry Campbell Gallery, New York.

November 6–December 20, 2014

Talk with Eric Dever: November 6, 2–3pm
Opening reception to follow

Frank and Gertrude Kaiser Art Gallery
Molloy College
1000 Hempstead Avenue
Rockville Centre, NY 11571

T +1 516 323 3196

The Frank and Gertrude Kaiser Art Gallery at Molloy College is proud to partner with Berry Campbell Gallery in New York to present an exhibition of 13 important paintings by Eric Dever. Eric Dever: The Rose Chapel brings the viewer through a spiritual journey, similar to the path of the artist himself, which in his painting over the past ten years has moved from darkness to light; from materiality to spirituality and from the earthbound to the transcendent. The exhibition will run from November 6 through December 20.

Mr. Dever will give an informal talk in the gallery on November 6 from 2 to 3pm and the reception will follow.

In the beginning of this decade-long process Dever limited his palette to white alone—Zinc and Titanium white, enabling him to uncover a white spectrum ranging from opacity to translucency. He later introduced black to the work, widening the range and force of the paintings. These compositions were largely geometric, including circles graded from dark to light. In 2010, Dever began testing a variety of prepared red hues and arrived at Napthol Scarlet, a modern replacement for Vermillion, and working it into some of the earlier compositions and treating it for what it was, generally speaking, red. He discovered that the range and quantity of tones were staggering, and all from red, white, and black alone.

This approach embraces Dever’s interest in color’s shifting correspondence with matter (black) to energy (red) to light and self-realization (white). Each wall of the Molloy Gallery reflects this path dramatically, whether encompassed in one painting or reflected in groups of three or more.

These recent paintings are breakthrough explorations, through and beyond the artist’s earlier formal inquiries. While the grid still resides within, each painting emerges into free shapes and tactile surfaces achieved by work with brush and knife. The starting point for this group of paintings, both in its essence, genus, was nothing more than an actual rose from his garden, which he deconstructed, letting the energetic qualities of color, line, and form emerge, presenting disclosures of yet richer, more rare hues. The most recent of these paintings represent a variation on that singular, original rose, with the additional element of the rose’s stamen. This new inclusion of an elemental form in the center of the canvas suggests the rose itself as both a microcosm and macrocosm.

The Chapelle du Rosaire du Vence (Vence Chapel or Matisse Chapel), a small chapel built for the Dominican Sisters in the South of France during 1948–51; The Sistine Chapel; The Vatican, Rome; as well as the Rothko Chapel, Houston, all parallel Dever’s installation of the Rose Chapel at Molloy College—founded by the Dominican Sisters of the Congregation of the Holy Cross.

Dever gives additional investigation of the physical space of the gallery as chapel by double hanging six large-scale rose paintings on the major wall. Not only the viewer, but the space itself, is overwhelmed by these paintings. The viewer is invited to become integrated within the space, harkening the floor to ceiling frescoes of Michelangelo. Dever’s concept illuminates both creation and awakening. The intensity of the installation at Molloy College relates to the experience at the Rothko Chapel. Simplicity becomes complexity as we further investigate each painting and grouping.

Since the early 1990s, Dever’s work has been included in numerous one-person and group exhibitions throughout New York, as well as in Illinois, Ohio, Texas, New Mexico, and France. Last spring, he participated in REDACTED, an exhibition at the Islip Art Museum curated by Janet Goleas. Most recently, Dever had a solo show at Berry Campbell Gallery in Chelsea.

Kaiser Gallery hours are Monday through Friday 10am to 6pm, and Saturday from 10am to 5pm, and two hours before theater events at the Madison Theater at Molloy College. The gallery will be closed for Thanksgiving from Wednesday, November 26 and will reopen on Monday, December 1.

For more information on Eric Dever, please contact the Kaiser Art Gallery at [email protected] or T +1 516 323 3196. Eric Dever is represented by Berry Campbell Gallery, New York: [email protected], T +1 212 924 2178.

November 5, 2014