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This acrylic painting titled “Peaceful Evening” by Kerstin Zettmar is included in the “A Splash of Color” exhibition at the Wickford Art Association.

NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. — As the gray and dreary winter days continue to drag on, Wickford Art Association’s latest exhibition is a promising signal for spring with a welcome oasis of bright, dazzling color.

On display through April 16, the exhibition “A Splash of Color” features an eccentric collection of new works of art that showcase color to the maximum degree, Maria Masse, Wickford Art Association executive director, said. By cleverly using high vibrancy colors, the ultimate goal of the exhibition is to create an emotional reaction of the viewer.

“Art as a whole evokes all sorts of emotions in all of us, color seems to intensify that emotion, or bring it to the forefront,” Masse said. “We may like it, or we may not – but either way it stirs emotion.”

The theme “A Splash of Color” was selected in the hopes of artists submitting unique and dynamic responses, Masse said. These pieces highlight the importance and beauty that comes from memorable pigment placement.

“Some artists have chosen to use a broad palette of vivid colors, others have chosen to interpret the theme with a relatively monotone backdrop to their work with literally a splash of color,” she said.

From the 67 artists that entered a total of 133 submissions, a final 57 pieces from 40 new artists were accepted into the exhibition, Masse said. The call for entry was open to all artists working in all media, not just members of the Wickford Arts Association. (Registered artists were allowed to submit up to three pieces to be considered.)

This artistic freedom allowed artists to interpret color in any mode they wanted, Masse said.

“Pigment can be used on multiple surfaces, and we did not want to limit artists to one or two methods of production,” she said.

The featured artwork had to be current original pieces, which were defined as being less than three years old. This rule was to motivate the artists to submit their best new work.

“We hope to urge artists to continue their art and keep it fresh and new for viewers visiting the gallery,” Masse said.

The exhibition’s jurist is Massachusetts-based artist, art instructor and curator Constance Vallis.

Vallis’ art education background is extensive, with a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from Columbia University and a Masters in Art, also in Art History, from New York University. According to Vallis’ artist statement, she is inspired by a variety of sources: calligraphy, art history, raku ceramic sculpture, intaglio printmaking, sacred geometry, digital prints and encaustic painting. Her work often features sweeping curves, intricate details and a wide range of colors to convey new ideas, emotions and messages.

All of the artwork is on sale during the duration of the exhibition, according to the exhibition’s prospectus. Masse said this stipulation works best for an exhibition, as patrons can feel inspired and purchase the art they see. This model helps the artists reach new buyers.

To buy a piece, interested patrons can visit the gallery in person or contact the Gallery directly by calling 401-294-6840. The price range for pieces is $300 - $3,000+.

Masse said she hopes everyone who views the exhibition will let themselves feel the emotions the colors evoke.

“The show isn’t color for color sake but the use of color against other colors can elicit a variety of emotions for the viewer,” she said. “We want our visitors to really feel the emotive qualities of the different pieces of art.”

For more information about the exhibition: visit https://wickfordart.org/.

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