Our June On View Feature will open June 2, 2023, showcasing the late painter, Daniel Pollera alongside artist Michele Poirier-Mozzone on the main wall of Sorelle Gallery in Westport, CT. The Feature will be on view through June 24th. To explore all artwork in the show online, view the show collection

Daniel Pollera's focus was crisply-executed land and seascapes, while Michele Poirier-Mozzone's is soft, fragmented figures from underwater vantage points. But each artist uses their chosen subject to simultaneously explore themes of water and light, and the relationship between the two. Pollera's landscapes often feature a strong light source, from a setting sun, moonlight, or a slight opening in the clouds, creating stark, dramatic variation in his compositions. Poirier-Mozzone's study of light is often more subtle, with slight reflections which are more integrated throughout, but impactful nonetheless. 

"I'm excited to enter the summer season with this Feature," says Sorelle Owner, Sandy Pelletier. "Both artists' work really celebrates this season - elaborating on our very human interaction with water, nature, sunlight, and confronting the viewer with the joy that comes along with it."

A woman looks at two paintings hung on a white wall. As Luck Would Have It by Michele Poirier-Mozzone (left) with Beached by Daniel Pollera (right).

About Daniel Pollera

Daniel Pollera (1953 - 2022) was born in the coastal town of Freeport, New York. His interest in art began at a very young age, gravitating toward drawing and painting the surrounding coastline of Long Island. After a short study at SUNY Farmingdale in Commercial Art, he left to enter the family business.

For almost 15 years, Daniel took a sabbatical from painting, but this didn’t affect his love for the sea. He obtained a Captain’s License in 1977 from the United States Coast Guard and took passengers for hire on the open ocean. Through this experience and visual knowledge he was drawn to begin painting again. Although Daniel was primarily self-taught, he worked with Frances Norris Streit, a portrait and mural artist, assisting her on a 14’ x 30’ historical mural for the Roslyn Savings Bank. He also studied with Everett Molinari, a well-respected President of the National Mural Society. Museum collections include Long Island Museum, Parrish Art Museum, and Guild Hall Museum.

For many years, Daniel split his time between his home in East Quogue, Long Island, NY and Baldwin Harbor, Long Island, NY. These two places offered him inspiration which was the catalyst for his work. “I look for a dramatic setting, filled with light to draw awareness to the image.” The light in his coastal scenes is most notable; people often say they wish they were there.

"We are only passing through this lifetime of ours," Pollera said in reference to his work. "This is a revolving window of constant change and taking in the beauty from a visual perspective is fascinating and interesting; that is what fuels my passion. Living within close proximity to the salt marshes and shoreline has enabled me to capture a moment in time. I feel a deep connection with my subject and it constantly inspires me. I hope that I convey a feeling through my paintings that will be shared for generations and reflect our love for the local waters as they are today."

Daniel Pollera passed away in March of 2022. 

You can read about Daniel Pollera's feature in Treasures of New York, or read our interview with Dan in 2020 about his process and inspiration. 

About Michele Poirier-Mozzone

Massachusetts artist Michele Poirier-Mozzone garnered national and international recognition for her work featuring the figure in oil paint or pastel as it is immersed and influenced by water and sunlight.

Michele's work has been featured in The Artists’ Network as well as in numerous print publications including International Artist Magazine (cover feature, Aug/Sept 2016), Pastel Journal Magazine, Practique des Arts, 2016 & 2018 (France) and Cape Cod Art Magazine (cover feature, 2017). Her work has been exhibited in group and solo shows as well as prestigious international competitions. Michele holds a Signature Member designation from the Pastel Society of America (PSA) and a Master Circle designation from the International Association of Pastel Societies (IAPS/MC). Her paintings are held in private collections across the United States and Europe.

"I pair my dual interests of figurative imagery and colorful abstraction to create paintings that are representational but also loose, fluid, and irregular. Aided by photographs, I work with soft pastel or oil paint to create multi-layered images that capture the unique feeling and distinct associations of the body suspended in water and in time.

The motivation behind this body of work is twofold. First, it allows me to paint what I love – the figure. Second, this series gives me the opportunity to explore areas of pure abstraction that exist naturally in turbulent, sunlight-drenched water. I find this unique atmosphere extraordinary.

Modeled on my daughters, friends, and even myself, the figures in this series are not meant to be readily identifiable as individuals. Rather, they provide an opportunity for viewers to place themselves within the context of my paintings to experience broken ribbons of sunlight, fascinating distortions, sounds of rushing bubbles, and the weightless, slow dance of movement which all occur below the water’s surface.

Within the works that make up Fractured Light, water is representative of life and change. Bubbles are placeholders for the ideas and intentions that rise from individuals to the open air. Through the interchange of figure, water, and air, the works in this series not only capture what would otherwise be fleeting moments of play and exploration, but also inner struggle and turmoil. Fractured Light is a compilation of snapshots in which we observe the figure reacting to an inner voice within this fluid, transformative environment."

Two new paintings by Michele Poirier-Mozzone, Hypnosis and The Artful Hand, will be part of the Feature. 

This On View feature is free and open to the public during gallery hours, Tuesday through Saturday 10:30am - 6:00pm, as well as Sundays noon to 4:00pm during summer months. Street parking is available. To view the featured artwork online, view the show collection. Questions? Contact us


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