Portia Munson show opens on Saturday in Saugerties

Portia Munson, Cedar Wax Wing, 2011, pigmented ink on rag paper, 17 X 21 in. (43.18 X 53.34 cm): Edition 1 of 5

Portia Munson, Cedar Wax Wing, 2011, pigmented ink on rag paper, 17 X 21 in. (43.18 X 53.34 cm): Edition 1 of 5

At first, Catskill-based Portia Munson was known for the art that she showed elsewhere: great piles of pink plastic detritus and other installations that made her a national and then international cultural force to be reckoned with. Then she started playing with a scanner, capturing images of compost and other things around her home…until a moment came when she wanted to capture a sense of personal loss and fleeting temporality. She picked flowers from her vast gardens that were at their peak and about to start on their downward mortal spiral. She arranged them into heartfelt mandalas, and later into more memento mori tableaux.

Now hot off successes in the New York and international art-fair art worlds, Munson is showing a series of refreshingly subtle and life-affirming floral and bone-constructed pieces, Little Suns, Hollow Bones, at the Cross Contemporary Art gallery in Saugerties. It’s the essence of spring, from its intimations of splashy rebirth to hints of darkness past and coming yet again.

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Portia Munson opening, Saturday, May 9, 6-8 p.m., through May, Cross Contemporary Art, 81 Partition Street, Saugerties; (845) 399-9751.

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