Special to Times
The Gallery at 249 A Street is set to premiere ‘Urban Edge’ – a new exhibit of works by local artists Duane Lucia and Steve Kromer.
Sponsored by the 249 A Street Artists Cooperative, Gallery East, and the South Boston Community Development Foundation, ‘Urban Edge’ is a collection of paintings, mixed media sculptures and photographs of graffiti through which the two artists conjure up thoughts and feelings about vandalism, superstition, street beat, death, surrealism, and neighborhood resistance to change. Kromer’s photographs portray the beauty, vulgarity and rawness not concerned with the comfort zone of others; roadside attractions which don’t need to be intellectualized. Lucia’s paintings and totem sculptures tell of a 45-year journey; a degenerated photobooth selfie, an assemblage of discarded objects, furniture found in the trash, cans, driftwood from the Fort Point Channel, and more.
“I like to take found objects that speak to me and work them into my mixed-media sculptures and paintings; sometimes the found objects themselves are combined as poetic ready-mades. I don’t like to talk about the narrative or meaning of my work, I’ll leave that for the viewer and critics; I do love talking about the process and materials because that’s how culture evolves,” said Lucia.
Lucia is an artist, curator, and documentary filmmaker working in the Fort Point, as well as the co-founder of Gallery East, which since 1979 has been a platform for Boston’s avant-garde. He is also a community activist and historian in the West End neighborhood he has called home for many years.
Kromer is a member of the 249 A St. Cooperative whose work includes “Party of Three,” which was presented at the 40th anniversary group exhibition at Atlantic Wharf Gallery this past spring. He is a singer, songwriter, and harmonica player.
“Music has to have an edginess and irreverence to move me. I think that explains the attraction to street or graffiti art,” said Kromer, who resides with fellow artist, Caroline Muir, at Fort Point.. “Call it self-expression or illegal eye floaters, graffiti and street art are part of the urban backdrop in cities and towns everywhere; it’s got a good beat.”
The Gallery at 249 A Street is supported by a grant from the South Boston Community Development Foundation, while the ‘Urban Edge’ exhibition is a Gallery East Production.
The exhibit runs from Wednesday, Jan. 10, through Saturday, Feb. 24. Gallery hours are by appointment only and can be arranged by calling 617-416-0718. The opening reception takes place on Saturday, Jan. 20, from 3 to 6 p.m. and is open to the public. Refreshments will be served. The exhibit and reception are both free.