Rita Argen Auerbach b. 1933, Golden Archway, 2010; watercolor, 30 x 22 inches; Courtesy of the artist

Rita Argen Auerbach b. 1933, Golden Archway, 2010; watercolor, 30 x 22 inches; Courtesy of the artist

Water in Motion: The Watercolor Painting Scene in Western New York by Rita Argen Auerbach

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Through my travels, I purposely seek out watercolor exhibitions and watercolor societies to observe the various styles, techniques and programs presented.  Watercolor medium is strongly growing and being appreciated because artists are experimenting with traditional and contemporary expressions. I have had the opportunity to demonstrate my technique and curate group exhibitions in many regions here and abroad. I feel a connection for the expansion and growth of this important media as a result of my passion for use of watercolor in my work.

The invitation to curate a watercolor exhibition in this recently opened Meridian West Gallery is the opportunity to present a group exhibition of work by past and current watercolor painters in the region.  Collectively these artists represent the broad range of inspiration, creative expression and motivation that is involved in exploring this elusive, challenging and technically demanding painting medium. 

Among the artists included here are Monica Angle, Bruce Blair, Jeanette Blair, Philip Burke, Thomas Aquinas Daly, Ani Hoover, Catherine O’Neill, Carol Siracuse, and Ellen Steinfeld.

This selection would not be complete without paying homage to the past regional watercolor painters whose contributions bring significant prominence to the medium: Robert Blair, Charles Burchfield, Margaret Martin, Joe Orffeo, Catherine Parker, and David Pratt. 

Burchfield Penney Art Center Director, Dr. Anthony Bannon, recently announced that the museum will be the “International Center for Watercolor” in recognition and celebration of the medium utilized by the Center’s namesake Charles E. Burchfield.  This exhibition responds to and extends that focus on watercolor media into the community.

Meridian West Gallery is pleased to showcase this comprehensive and multifaceted watercolor exhibition Water in Motion, April 6 - May 4, 2013.  



Rita Argen Auerbach is an internationally recognized watercolor artist and educator who is represented in numerous museum, corporate and private collections throughout the United States. Her award winning paintings have portrayed such subjects as Buffalo's architecture, Chautauqua Institution's Victoriana, and landscapes inspired by extensive travel in this country and abroad. Auerbach's works are characterized by strong value contrasts created by light and shade using rich luminous transparent watercolor.

National and International juried exhibitions have included her paintings such as The Adirondacks National Exhibition of American Watercolors, Pennsylvania Watercolor Society, Montana Watermedia, Mid-Atlantic Regional Watercolor Exhibition, and the Erie and Niagara Landscape Exhibition in Dortmund, Germany. Rita was invited for a one artist exhibition in The Academy of Art in Riga, Latvia.

Rita's paintings have been exhibited in Western New York at the Burchfield-Penney Art Center, Nina Freudenheim, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Kenan Art Center, Big Orbit Gallery, Carnegie Art Center, Castellani Art Museum, Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center, Chautauqua Center for the Visual Arts, and others.

A distinguished alum at Buffalo State, she was an art teacher and district art department chair in Clarence Central Schools, named Western New York Art Educator of the Year in 1993, and is listed in "Who's Who Among America's Teachers". 

Rita has conducted painting excursion workshops in Costa Rica, France, Italy and Spain. A former faculty member of Chautauqua Institution Special Studies Program, she was a delegate to the Chautauqua Institution/Eisenhower Institute Conference on U.S.-Soviet Relations in Riga, Latvia. Her sketches of the trip became the Conference's official gift to the Soviet Government and are published in "Sketches and Reflections of a Journey." Articles about her painting techniques have been recently included in American Artist Magazine and Watercolor Magazine.

Chair of the Advisory Council of the Burchfield Penney Art Center in Buffalo, NY and past president of the Buffalo Society of Artists, she is listed in "Who's Who in American Art".