PAOLA SAVARINO, DUANE LUCIA AND TONY SAVARINO
Gallery at 249 A Street is set to premier Abstractions, a new exhibit of works by Paola Savarino, Duane Lucia and Tony Savarino, which explores deviations in three mediums.
Sponsored by 249 A Street Artists Cooperative, Gallery East and the South Boston Community Development Foundation, the exhibit runs from Wednesday, January 15 through Friday, February 21, 2020.
Gallery hours are by appointment at 617-416-0718. The show reception takes place on Friday, January 17, from 6 to 8 p.m. and is open to the public. There will also be a special musical performance by the Savtones on Saturday, February 1 from 5 to 7p.m. Refreshments will be served. The exhibit, reception and performance are FREE.
Abstractions is co-curated by Duane Lucia and Tony Savarino, and features 30 photographs and mixed media drawings. The photographs document a year-long collaboration between Lucia and Savarino which captures the convergence and divergence of planes of movement through multiple exposure imagery. Paola Savarino’s drawings, discovered two years after her death, trace a progression of what begin as still life drawings of sunflowers, into what she termed Sunflower Sutras.
“Duane and I had practiced martial arts together for a number of years and wanted to document it for a painting and sculpture project we were working on,” said Savarino, “Along the way, we discovered a multi exposure setting in the camera and just went with it!”
Lucia has practiced and taught traditional martial arts since 1972; he has changed the nuance enough to consider it a new style, and subsequently has passed the art-form on to future generations. With four albums and too many studio sessions to keep track of, Tony Savarino is an accomplished guitarist and teacher; mostly known as band leader of the Savtones. Both Lucia and Savarino see art as a continuum with license to change medium at will. Lucia is as comfortable working in mixed media or film as he is doing his martial arts, while Savarino can be found with his Leica camera often photographing his audience, students or bandmates.
“After Paola passed away, I took over her studio and started to catalog her work, which included her sketchbooks,” said Lucia, “I found a series of drawings which start out as recognizable sunflowers and progressively morph into her stylized abstract images. When we discovered the larger corresponding mixed media drawings rolled up in a box, our immediate thought was to exhibit them.”
Early in Savarino’s career, she illustrated Charles Bukowski’s poem, “The Genius of the Crowd.” In the 1980s, she became known for her large abstract canvases and more recently her encaustic mixed media Buddhas. She received numerous awards over the course of her career, including a Museum of Fine Arts Fifth Year Grant and an endowment from the WBZ-TV Fund for the Arts to create one of the first large arts projects—a billboard painting—in Fort Point. Her paintings are part of the permanent collection at The Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University.