Visual Arts

The Versatility of Roz Dorlen and a Trip to the Universe

“Montauk View”

As a practicing psychologist, Dr. Roz Dorlen understands the value and impact of multiplicity in human psychology. As an artist she explores feelings and moods by applying multiple approaches to art making.

This art journey begins in simple, serene surroundings. We enter her painting Montauk View onto a porch and watch the ocean. There is a bright, cobalt blue table facing front of the artwork that almost acts as a runway or diving board inviting one into the ocean itself. On the right side of the painting is an arbor of greenery. This composition is pleasing because of the arrangement of the table, slightly off-center which pulls your eye towards the sea. One imagines many hours sitting and contemplating this calming scene.

Dorlen loves porches. The pieces titled Vermont Porch and Vermont Winter Porch, are about connection. There are no people in these vignettes yet one senses a presence. Two rocking chairs among a plethora of plants and a pair of boots are shown in Vermont Winter Porch. One can feel a friendly conversation was just had in the scene. Perhaps a couple sitting and listening to birdsong. The simplicity of being present, hearing the sounds of the woods and all living things. In the work, Vermont Porch we see another porch covered in wood shakes in the warm glow of afternoon light. Thus there is a connection between the warmth of home and nature. In this approach she explores the familiar and known.

In another approach her brush strokes convey a more pronounced emotionality as in the piece titled Echo Lake Park. She begins her magic with soft, airy paint marks where a single figure is walking in the rain.

“As an artist she explores feelings and moods by applying multiple approaches to art making”

The light cast is a purplish-blue, trees reflected everywhere, as if the park is inside a mirror. Splashes of green, gold and white are dappled throughout the image, suggestive of Monet. This is no longer a picture of the rain, but the feeling of rain and the mist and mystery of it. One can sense that Dorlen is leading us into her third iteration of art making. She is calling us to light and movement, to the abstraction of park, rain, wet, blue, alone. Someplace less familiar than the porch and more appealing even if we are uncertain as to where she will lead us. We want to go to that magical interlude.

“Echo Lake Park”

In her Spacescapes series, we enter a swirling universe of color, movement, energy. As if we are witness to the birthing of a star or planet. Dorlen takes us from the contemplative to the cosmic ballet of constellations, stars, galaxies and variations of light, the magnificent macrocosm of the material world. In the work titled Birth II circles and ellipses in red and blue swirls on black look like exploding stars creating new realms, creating intense energy, creating a mysterious beauty.

“Birth II”

In the painting Starburst, pinks, gold, and orange splay from a black center in concentric circles of flecked paint. When we visit this celestial experience we see a connection, a linkage from the cozy porch to the misted park, to the universe birthing. All of it is about variety in the natural world. Dorlen’s work shares an affinity for both the known, classic painterly technique and the unknown of abstraction. Her vision of the universe is fresh and exciting along with her versatility with each phase of her paintings. The universe paintings in particular excel in originality. We are the better for it as she helps us learn to love the planet earth, and guides us through all its multiple transformations. G&S

Roz Dorlen’s solo show “Views from the Front Porch” recently seen at Montserrat Contemporary Art Gallery 547 West 27th St. Her work may also be seen in the year-round salon

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