Visionary Art Collective is thrilled to announce its first in-person exhibition in NYC, The Lens Through Which We See, featuring the work of six contemporary landscape painters: Bri Custer, Colleen Gleason Shull, Julie Avisar, Ekaterina Popova, Amanda Hawkins and Sarah Boyle. Each artist captures the beauty of the natural world while conveying a deeper truth, filtering what she observes through emotion and memory. The resulting paintings are both a celebration of the land and of each artist’s interiority, providing a locus for the interplay of perceived reality and personal understanding. While deeply tied to a physical place, the work is transcendent, gesturing beyond what is seen to what is felt; through particular attention to each scene and what it evokes, the artists meld the observable universe with individual experience.  

Artwork from The Lens Through Which We See will be available for private viewings at 183 Lorraine St in Brooklyn, NY from April 29 - May 21, 2023.

"Trees With Sun Spots" by Sarah E. Boyle

Sarah Boyle Bio

Sarah E. Boyle is a Chicago-based painter who studied fashion, theatrical design, and illustration at Syracuse University and Ringling School of Art and Design before receiving her BFA in Painting and Drawing at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has been a resident of the Cornelia Arts Building (Chicago, IL) since 2015. Boyle uses oil on canvas and panel to convey place formally through landscape and introspectively through location, symbol, void and scale. Her work has been featured in Studio Visit Magazine, Vanity Fair UK, The Third Coast Review, New Visionary Magazine, and Nuvo. She has shown at galleries and spaces throughout Chicago, IL, Indianapolis and Carmel, IN.

Acrylic on Canvas by Julie Avisar

Julie Avisar Bio

Julie Avisar was born in the UK and is now based in Israel. She is primarily a landscape artist with drawing as her main medium. Julie received a B.A. degree in Interior Design from Chelsea College of Arts, London.

Since studying, Julie's life has revolved around the arts - from volunteering with children to working as a graphic designer for a New York art gallery to designing her own house.

Julie's paintings are inspired by her local landscape which reflect her fascination with place and identity. The lines, shapes and colours weave an intricate fabric of the lands’ narrative which never fails to excite her.  

Her art has been exhibited in two solo exhibitions and one group exhibition.

"River + Forest" by Colleen Gleason Shull

Colleen Gleason Shull Bio

I work from observation and I’m interested in what exists between abstraction and recognition. My paintings explore the play of light reflections on water, windows, and mirrors. My subjects range from landscapes to still lifes made up of glass and abstracted floral elements to figures and self portraiture with mirrored abstractions of the figure. When I paint outside en plein air or inside the studio I seek to translate my immediate surroundings. The paintings have become a record of the places I have traveled and lived. I work in oil, acrylic, watercolor and gouache. My color palette is highly saturated and vibrant with a focus on large forms and shadows. Gestural marks are layered with thick applications of juicy paint set against thin flowing watercolor washes. The observed space is simplified to a mix of organic and geometric forms as I try to capture the essence of the subject.

Colleen Gleason Shull attended the inaugural class of the South Carolina Governor’s School of the Arts and then earned her BFA in painting with a dual major in Art History from the Kansas City Art Institute.  She completed her MFA in Studio Art in Dallas, Texas at Southern Methodist University’s Meadows School of the Arts in 2011. Her work is in private collections across the country.

"Love Me In Silence" by Bri Custer

Bri Custer Bio

Bri Custer is a plein air painter investigating perception, memory, and color through the New England Landscape. She received her M.Ed. in Secondary Education (2019) and B.A. in Studio Art with a minor in Psychology(2014) from the University of New Hampshire. Her work has been featured by Clover + Bee, Candyfloss, and on the Create! Magazine blog and can be found at Nahcotta in Portsmouth, NH and Sorelle Gallery in Westport, CT. She is currently a full-time artist based in Concord, New Hampshire with her husband, Bryan and hound-lab mix, Vinny.

"August 5th, 2022" by Amanda K Hawkins

Amanda K Hawkins Bio

Amanda K Hawkins is an award-winning painter living and working in Beverly, MA. She received her Bachelors of Fine Arts from Montserrat College of Art in 2014 and her Master of Fine Arts in Painting from Boston University in 2021. Amanda prioritizes engaging her local community by hosting workshops at deCordova Museum and Sculpture Park, Rocky Neck Art Colony where she is a board member, and many other local organizations alongside teaching full time at her alma-mater, Montserrat College of Art. She also teaches workshops across North America, alongside hosting virtual workshops and providing virtual mentorship to artists all over the world. Amanda has a strong online presence and shares her creative practice with over 25K people worldwide. Amanda actively exhibits her work in galleries across New England and has work in private art collections across the world. Most recently, Amanda spent the month of January in residency at Penland School of Craft creating work for the show “The Lens Through Which We See” opening April 20th, 2023.

"Campfire" by Ekaterina Popova

Ekaterina Popova Bio

Ekaterina Popova is an award-winning artist born in Russia, known mostly for her original oil paintings of interiors. Ekaterina received a Bachelor's in Fine Art from Kutztown University in 2011 and since then has been exhibiting her work internationally. She is interested in expressive work exploring mood and emotion and is influenced by post-impressionism, fauvism, magical realism, which has enabled her to examine the subject of home, place, belonging, and identity over the past decade.  

Her work has been exhibited internationally, including Cohle Gallery in Paris and Menorca, The Painting Center in New York, James Oliver Gallery, Decorazon Gallery, Affordable Art Fair, Art Miami Fairs, The Trenton City Museum, Paradigm Gallery, Delaware Contemporary, The Boxheart Gallery, A.I.R. Gallery, and more.  

Popova has been featured in multiple blogs and publications, including Colossal, Beautiful Bizarre, American Art Collector, The Jealous Curator, DPI Magazine, Friend of The Artist, Iceview, and The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Ekaterina attended several residencies, including at Centre Pompadour in Abbeville, France, NES Residency in Iceland, the Skopelos Foundation for the Arts in Greece.