BERLIN — Artist Mark Barry is exhibiting his paintings at Central Vermont Medical Center’s first floor art gallery. The show, titled “Eating, Playing, Dancing, Squeezing, Loving”, runs from now until August 4, 2017.
Barry’s paintings came to the attention of gallery director Maureen Burgess when he exhibited last summer at the Bennington Museum. “I instantly loved Barry’s work and pursued him to exhibit at Central Vermont Medical Center because his work boldly and colorfully celebrates life,” Burgess said. Fortunately he visited the hospital and agreed to show his paintings.
Barry is a colorist — someone who loves color, paints color in large blocks and compels us not just see, but to stay and see his paintings.
Sure enough, these are representational paintings, a man on a bicycle, another man on the floor taking a photo of his dog, a couple dancing in the kitchen. These are much more than your standard representational painting because once drawn into them, we see things that are silly, enchanting, a little odd, playful.
The late John Dorsey, a longtime Baltimore Sun critic, wrote the following comment about Barry’s unusual artistic vision.
“Barry’s greatest gift is the happiness with which he endows his images. This is not a mindless, silly happiness but springs from a deep appreciation of life. Whatever Barry’s people do – cook soft crabs, play with the dog, read quietly, have a night out, kiss one another, take a bath – Barry has them do it with a loving sense of the gift of time.”
Artist Mark Barry
Barry was born in Worcester, Massachusetts and received his bachelor of fine arts from the Swain School of Design (now UMass at Dartmouth) in 1981. He studied on the graduate level at Brooklyn College and Johns Hopkins University. Barry and his wife Sandra, also an artist, moved to Vermont from Maryland a few years ago. This is Mark Barry’s first exhibit in central Vermont. He has exhibited his oil paintings, painted ceramics and etchings in venues across the country since 1981. His work is in the collection of the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Baltimore Sun and numerous corporate and private collections. Barry is also a contributing writer for ionarts, a blog for music, arts and literature. You can find him at markbarry.blogspot.com and also on Instagram.