'Winter' arrives early at GO ART!

Nov 14, 2012

'Winter' arrives early at GO ART!

Themed group show open at Batavia, Medina galleries

BATAVIA — Dennis Wood can do a painting in about 15 hours.

But he feels as though each one has taken him 70 years to complete, he says.

The 70-year-old lifetime artist will have a piece of his work in GO-ART!’s latest exhibit, “Winter Dreams.”

“I can’t remember ever not liking art,” he said. “I paint whatever catches my eye. I want to do more tractors. I’m mechanical, I like to tinker. I can relate to guys who like to fix up old tractors.”

The just-opened show will run through Dec. 19 at Seymour Place, 201 East Main St. A similar exhibition will be on display through Jan. 1 at Shirt Factory Cafe, 115 West Center St., Medina.

Artists’ receptions are set for 5 to 7 p.m. Nov. 30 at each gallery.

Wood’s piece is a 1950s model tractor sitting in the snow. It caught his eye on Route 5 in the town of Batavia. He liked the contrast: black rubber tires with patterned tread offset by snow that had settled into each deep groove.

“Art can be some of the best problem-solving and thinking,” he said. “You have to figure out how can I achieve that effect.”

Joe Langen, an Americorps worker at GO-ART!, and his son Peter also have works in the show. The elder Langen painted a mountain scene while his son’s work depicts a holiday-inspired rocking horse. Favoring the landscape in California and Alaska, Langen’s scene was rich in shades of purple and blue with a touch of pink in the snow.

“Mountains and oceans are my two favorite things,” Joe Langen said. “This was an open show to any artist who has ever exhibited. Everything has some connection with winter.”

There are 33 works of mixed media including watercolor, pastels, acrylic, oil and photographs. About half are for sale. Wood’s piece is not. He is hoping to build up a collection so that he can have his own gallery show some day, he said.

Although his creative streak began early, he stopped cold for about 15 years. He and his wife Jane Porter enjoyed gardening and other activities that took him away from painting. He was having “so much fun” he put painting aside, he said. After she died in January 2006, he felt a double loss.

“All of a sudden I said it’s time to go back,” he said. “And I got married again ... to Jenny Myers. The life and the color are back in my life.”

Carol Gomborone of Le Roy has come a long way since taking her first lessons in January, she said. She could only do stick figures. She did paintings of each her brother’s and sister’s homes and was invited by Langen to submit something to this show. He also had a photo of a snow-covered tree that he liked and asked her to replicate it.

“A lot of people love to do winter scenes,” she said. “Snow was more difficult than I thought it would be. Snow isn’t really just white. There’s a touch of gray and a touch of blue.”

She also put a clear gel on top to accentuate glistening flakes that blanket the bare tree limbs. Gomborone credits her ability to teacher Lorie Longhany, whose work is also in this show.

“She can convince anyone that you can paint,” Gomborone said. “It’s very relaxing to me. I tend to be high-strung. I’m tickled to death when I’m finished.”

Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday in Batavia and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday in Medina.