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Silvermine show winner Rick Shaefer gets solo exhibition

February 7, 2019

Artist Rick Shaefer’s solo exhibition, “Three Trees: Life-Size Drawings,” will open Saturday, Feb. 16, at New Canaan’s Silvermine Arts Center.

Shaefer, of Fairfield, was 2017 Best in Show in Silvermine’s “Art of the Northeast,” and this solo exhibition is a result of that honor, the center said in a news release

Shaefer, a Fairfield resident, draws with charcoal — using a language of mark-making that is defined, gestural and rhythmic — to create life-sized images on vellum paper.

The richness of detail, reminiscent of Rembrandt’s etchings or Durer’s woodcuts, imbues the work with a resonant stillness and dignity, Silvermine said.

Shaefer, quoted in the release, said of his technique: “I do not use the charcoal in the classic manner with rubbing and smudging the tones and erasing to bring back highlights. My technique resembles the look of etching, engraving, lino or woodcut in that each line is distinct, and tone is gained by crosshatching or scribbling. The intent is to highlight the act of drawing, the myriad decisions made of putting down each mark in succession.”

The three trees in the exhib give “full rein to Shaefer’s fascination with the majesty and the ponderous bulk of these fallen Oaks and the exquisite complexity of the underside of the pulled-up Sycamore stump: views that we might pass by without notice if they were not pulled from their surroundings and placed directly before us. In isolated stillness these drawings communicate with us in a palpable way,” the center said.

Shaefer’s solo exhibition runs concurrently with “ReFRAMING Aging: Health, Happiness and the Arts” through Saturday, March 23.

Silvermine Arts Center, 1037 Silvermine Road, New Canaan. 203-966-9700.

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