Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Gideon Stein Gallery New to Bridgehampton

About the Artist in Residence and Gallery Director, Gideon Stein:

Gideon Stein has devoted his life to producing a body of art and music. He began playing guitar when he was eight years old, and immediately fell in love with the instrument. In his early years, Sheila Lamb, who led the art department at the Dalton School was his mentor. At 17, his work was included in a Dalton student art show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It was his first show. During these formative years, aside from the instruction at the Dalton School, he took studio art courses at Don Stacy Studios while attending City-As-School, and studied sculpture and color theory with Jon Batdorff at Goddard College, VT. “Painting, sculpture and music have always been woven together for me.” Said Stein.

His first serious exposure to Jazz was while interning in the art department of GRP Records in New York City in 1987. He then studied with guitar master Howard Morgen at the New School. Following which he played with post-punk and alt-rock bands on the lower east side in the early ‘90’s. He contributed guitar tracks to a Lisa Lisa album in 1993 entitled “LL77”. While earning a living as a musician, his interest and development in visual art grew concurrently. In 1993 his mural “Universal Harmony”, strongly influenced by jazz, was exhibited at the Borough of Manhattan Community College.

During 1995 he traveled throughout Central Java and Bali, Indonesia at which time he took a sabbatical from painting. Far from his urban roots, the light, color and lifestyle of these primitive places lead to a renewed enthusiasm and a breakthrough for Stein as a visual artist. This was a pivotal point at which he decided to study painting intensively with Emily Mason and printmaking with Vincent Longo at Hunter College. He became a member of the Salmagundi Club, NYC In 1998. Following in 1999, another journey abroad, this time to Morocco, where he traveled from Casablanca through Marrakech to the High Atlas Mountains presented even further inspiration.

When Stein returned to America, he moved to Woodstock, NY to assist the painter Al Held. While assisting Held, he continued to explore his own work. In 2002, Stein’s love of music and art synchronized in his mobile “Guitar Sculpture”, which was featured in the Woodstock art communities’ centennial event. In 2003, he immersed himself in a four-year music and art intensive in Brooklyn’s Park Slope, where he recorded music, participated in group shows, displayed his work in local venues, and performed at area clubs. In 2006 he participated in the Park Slope Artist Studio tour following which he relocated to Bridgehampton, NY to open the Gideon Stein Gallery in 2007. On August 19th he launched the gallery’s inaugural show, a retrospective of his own pieces of mixed media works on paper, canvas, wood and shoes. Proceeds from this inaugural show benefited the Peconic Land Trust and the Nassau Land Trust.

An Artist-in-Residence in Bridgehampton, Mr. Stein seeks to focus his energy on private, site-specific murals and sculpture, while providing exposure for both established and emerging artists. He is currently working on the roster for exhibitions for the summer season.

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