Loretta Howard Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of major canvases by Edward Dugmore from the 1960s. The works on display trace the artist’s engagement with the American West. This affinity developed at an early age in part from an interest in Native American life that began while looking through his fathers National Geographic magazines. The 1960s marked a period during which the artist turned his field of vision away from the city and mined visual representation for inspiration. For Dugmore, the Rocky Mountains, which he experienced as a visiting artist to the Aspen school of Art in 1961, became a mystic symbol. Dugmore’s mountainous topographies avoid direct visual reference instead embodying the tectonic drama of the landscape as a catalyst for spiritual reflection. This romantic impulse can be traced to English poet and painter William Blake who’s own ambition was to render the contemplation of nature as a transformative experience.
Equally important were Dugmore’s yearly trips to Washington, Maine, where he and his wife purchased land in 1960 along with fellow artists Ernie Briggs and Anne Arnold. A selection of ink drawings from the early 1960s highlights the important influence of this environment on the artist’s paintings of the next ten years. Dugmore sketched, often times interpreting the landscape through its reflection in the Medomak River and nearby saltwater coves.