ECA+ Creative Member Directory
Mapping the Arts in Easthampton, Southampton, & Westhampton


Marlene Rye


Landscape Paintings: Initmate Immensities

Travel in your mind back to a time as a child when you were in the wilderness: backyard, vacant lot, roadside, field, or forest. Remember how the world looked as you crawled through the grass, each individual blade becoming a towering tree, rocks transformed into mountains. Visualize looking through the brambles and thickets of your backyard and feeling the enormity of that space juxtaposed with the closeness of the surrounding branches. See a field, feel the openness of the air and the closeness of the warm ground beneath, expanding and contracting the space at the same time. These sensations are at the heart of my work. Through painting I explore the idea of what wilderness feels like. Seldom do we slow down or use our senses fully enough to really experience nature. Take a stroll into these paintings, feel the color with your hands, breathe in the rich vividness. Journey slowly, letting the leaves brush against your body, notice the fragrance of purple flowers underfoot. Revel in the freshness of spring and celebrate the crispness of autumn. Dance with the trees as they stretch through the space, winding like ribbons in the wind. Whether I am painting large or tiny, I seek to create intimate worlds with a feeling of immensity. This vastness doesn't necessarily manifest itself in the form of deep space, but rather a feeling of expansion inside oneself when looking at the work. Landscape, wilderness, and the outdoors are spiritually and emotionally important to all of us. As children we know this inherently. I want to speak to that child in the viewer, and help them recapture a sense of the mystery, anxiousness, excitement and magic felt when outdoors.

Marlene Rye received her A.B. in art at Smith College in 1993. From there she went on to earn an M.A. in art at Western Carolina University and an M.F.A. from the University of Pennsylvania. She has studied under distinguished artists such as Andrew Forge, Robert Godfrey, Barbara Grossman, John Moore, and Martha Armstrong. Currently she is showing her work nationally and has been accepted into juried shows with curators from the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Guggenheim.

Marlene Rye is currently represented by Gross McCleaf Gallery in Philadelphia, Coda Gallery in New York City. and Watkins Gallery in Northampton, MA.