Driscoll & Nurkse exhibit opens at RAG Oct. 18

Roxbury — Neil Driscoll and Lucille Nurkse, two artists with very different backgrounds and training but with a very similar approach to creating work that transcends the visual, that tells a story and evokes a collective sensibility, will be showcased in an exhibit at the Walt Meade Gallery of The Roxbury Arts Group from October 18 through November 17. There will be a reception for the artists on Saturday, Oct. 18 from 2 to 4 p.m.
Neil Driscoll, well-known to local residents for his glorious perennials on sale at the Pakatakan Farmers’ Market, received his formal art training as a part-time student at the Memphis Academy of Art and at summer classes at The Art Institute of Chicago. When he moved to his wife’s home state of New York in the 70s they built and performed with a puppet theater, while working on a dairy/vegetable farm in the Schoharie Valley. Neil exhibits at Artworks in Cobleskill. He says he paints for the pleasure of it and styles vary, but in each piece there is something that, for him, reflects his attraction to Eskimo masks, i.e., they convey much more than the image on the page.
Whimsical and evocative, Neil’s work is instantly appealing, reaching out to the viewer with charm and an innocence that belies a sophisticated technique.
Lucille Nurkse, who lives and works in Brooklyn has exhibited in solo and juried shows in New York City around the U. S. A. She has been awarded residencies at Virginia Center for the Arts, Byrdcliffe Art Colony and Blue Mountain Center. She works figuratively in oil, watercolor, linocut and collage. She studied Chinese calligraphy with Wang Chi-Yuan until his death.
Like Driscoll, Nurkse creates work that is deceptively simple and that immediately engages the viewer. The human figure is the guiding motif in her work. She says, “When someone is doing something that catches my attention, I use memory and a sketch to reframe that moment and make it ever present.
She simplifies figures and constructs space by using blocks of color broken by pattern, using every possible type of paper – handmade, cutup watercolors, drawings and prints, fabric, as well as flat Color Aid paper to create texture, movement and emotional tone. She says, “For every figure the challenge is to capture the essential gesture. The stories I create marry abstract with representational and mirror the beauty and adventure of our humanity.”