SHAMOKIN — “FRESH,” a visual art show at the Northumberland County Council for the Arts and Humanities Fine Art Gallery, celebrates the work of five female artists with different styles.
Curator Lisa Welch Knecht said she selected the women because of their specialties in a variety of techniques, then allowed them to choose the pieces to bring to the show, which opened Friday evening.
The five selected artists are digital artist Miranda Balthaser,of Shamokin, painter Erin Clarke, of Danville, photographer Mary Cotsack, of Conyngham Borough, Luzerne County, charcoal artist Valentine Mountjoy, of Coal Township, and painter Savannah Kerrick, of Beaver Meadows.
“I tried to bring in five young women who are all doing something unique,” said Knecht.
Distinctiveness is also key for the artists in selecting their subjects. Mountjoy said she looks for compelling characteristics when choosing a person for one of her charcoalsketches.
“My goal is to either tell a story or describe a person’s character,” she said.
Among the pieces Mountjoy selected for the show is “Portrait of Seth,” a close-up facial sketch of her neighbor. Through the expression in his eyes, which she said are a striking color, Mountjoy portrayed his key characteristics of thoughtfulness and quietude.
Cotsack said she is more spontaneous in choosing scenes to shoot. The 10th grader pointed to “SkyChief,” a photograph of a gas station with three vintage pumps, and said it caught her attention while she was on a drive with her family.
“It was a really small thing amid all the foliage,” she said. “It was kind of cute.”
Cotsack’s photography, which included chiaroscuro portraits and surrealistic images, added a degree of levity to the show. Balthaser, 13, spent much of the opening at work, demonstrating her method ofusing an electronic pen and tablet to create images.
The opening reception had a steady stream of attendees, and Knecht is optimistic more people would visit the gallery and sign the visitor log over the course of the show.
“It really encourages young artists when people come out and see their art,” she said. “It may mean whether they continue doing it or not.”
The show runs through Feb. 9. The Gallery is open during normal business hours Monday through Friday.