Photographer Alan McGee is featured at Portola Art Gallery in Menlo Park in July

by Frances Freyberg on July 1, 2013

The Portola Art Gallery in Menlo Park presents “A Walk in the Woods — Landscape as Metaphor,” a collection of images by photographer Alan McGee of Portola Valley. A reception will be held on July 6 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm.

Through his photographs of San Mateo County woodlands, McGee hopes to achieve a synthesis that melds the natural beauty of the wooded landscape of his neighboring hills with the more subtle expressive possibilities that exist in those landscapes.

Explains McGee: “My intention is to engage the viewer in a visual dialogue with the photographic print that may act as a catalyst for the imagination.”

The woodlands and their surrounding landscapes lend themselves to a variety of interpretations, primarily because of their evocative forms that change with the seasons. The winter ground fog helps to simplify the forms and adds a feeling of mystery and melancholy to some of the images.

“I have gradually come to the conclusion, after nearly 50 years of photography, that my strongest images are those that have multiple layers of meaning and are thus open to a variety of interpretations,” says McGee. “I am passionate about combining feeling and form in equal measure and am compelled to explore the energy that seems to exist between what is represented and what is implied in the photograph.”

“Sunflowers” Group Theme on View through mid-August

Also at Portola Art Gallery this summer, artists will participate in the group theme, “Sunflowers,” in tribute to one of van Gogh’s most famous subjects. Visitors will enjoy each artist’s unique interpretation of this beloved summer flower.

The Portola Art Gallery is located at Allied Arts Guild, 75 Arbor Road, in Menlo Park.

Photograph, Reflecting Pool by Alan McGee

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