Playing In the Dark: A Collection of Work By Loel Barr


Feb 3, 2018 to Feb 26, 2018
11:00 AM until 06:00 PM

This event occurs weekly, on Sunday, Monday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.



“I play with my dark side. We all have one, so we might as well enjoy it.” — Loel Barr


"Playing In the Dark: A Collection of Work By Loel Barr"

February 3 - 29, 2018
Opening reception Saturday, Feb 3, 2018, 5-8 PM

An exhibition of artwork by Hudson Valley favorite Loel Barr. Works include assemblages, collage, digital art, drawings, monoprints, and paintings.

Work will be available to view and purchase at


“I’m an adventurer,” states Saugerties artist Loel Barr, “but now I enjoy mental exploration more than the physical sort. I usually have a sketchbook in my bag ... airports, bus stations, waiting rooms are never boring if I have paper and ballpoint.”  


Loel Barr is a native of Kansas and has travelled extensively. She lived and worked in New Zealand and the Washington, DC area for many years where she established a successful career as a freelance illustrator for such clients as The Washington Post, The Smithsonian Institution, National Geographic, and Time Life Books. She has taught illustration at the college level and was a staff illustrator for USA Today. She moved to the Hudson Valley in 2004.


For the past decade plus, Barr has been creating art for herself. “I’ve finally been set free to draw, paint, collage the stories that find me, out in the world or scrabbling around in my unconscious.” Included in “Loel Barr: Playing In the Dark” are many of her personal drawings from over the years that elevate the ordinary with her strokes of the pencil; new works using a digital brush; ghostly monoprints; collage works with a bit of nostalgia; and a surreal mixed media abstract landscape rich with texture.


Barr’s skill is on full display in her graphite drawings of clothing and in the oil paintings “Her Secret” and “Once She Was Innocent” where, at first glance, the viewer is led to believe that the work is a collage. A collection of work that represents Barr’s artistic journey will be on exhibit and many of her figure drawings and sketches will be available to view in portfolios.  


Throughout much of Barr’s work is a an unsettled, sometimes ghostly, feeling and presence. Sinister characters such as “Crazy Old Carl” and “Smilin’ Joe” are drawn over collaged Chinese restaurant menus and old encyclopedia pages; a jester dances on a church lawn at night in the mixed media work “Dancing for Jesus”, while two other jesters juggle a baby in “The Babysitters.” Her offbeat humor and vision — with an outsider aesthetic — may at first give the viewer pause, but they will be strangely drawn back in by Barr’s irresistible grotesque charm. 


“I play with my dark side. We all have one,” admits the artist, “so we might as well enjoy it.” 



Emerge Gallery focuses on emerging artists from the Hudson Valley, NY, region and beyond by hosting monthly group art exhibitions, and other events. It is a very open and welcoming environment that is a wonderful setting for private parties and gatherings and is available for rental. The space is also available to rent for solo and privately curated exhibitions. 






View map Emerge Gallery
228 Main St
Saugerties, NY

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We make every effort to ensure the accuracy of this information. However, you should always call ahead to confirm dates, times, location, and other information.

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