Framing Carol Peek for “Beloved California”

Another outstanding painting featured in our upcoming annual all-gallery exhibition will be Carol Peek‘s 24″ x 36″ oil called “Metamorphosis.” Carol says that “this beautiful place has a creek that runs through it [which] marks the Marin/Sonoma boundaries. The entire area between these two extraordinary counties is a very inspiring place for me.” The story behind “Metamorphosis” makes clear that this work exemplifies the spirit of our show, “Beloved California IV: Twenty Painters with a Passion for Place.”

Framed Carol Peek painting

Carol Peek, “Metamorphosis,” 2019. Oil on canvas, 24″ x 36″ (35″ x 47″ outside frame dimensions).

About “Metamorphosis”, the painter has composed the following notes:

In our lives, we may find a place, scene or area that we connect with in a very intimate way for a myriad of reasons; sometimes tangible and often times not. These places feel reverent, spiritual, familiar or extraordinary in some way that sets them apart from scenes or places we pass without notice. My friend lives in such a place and I had the great fortune of living in this valley myself, on a small horse ranch, in my life before marriage and kids, exploring the paths on horseback that lead through this timeless place, letting inspiration plant seeds that would later become paintings. My current home is not far and as time allows, I come to paint and experience anew, as a human being and artist, the commencement of seasons, their blossoming and transformation, in a continual flow of life, transition and wisdom.

Carved frame corner detailShortly before Carol brought us the painting, Jessie and I had been talking about asking one of our artists to paint something for this beautiful frame Trevor Davis made earlier this year. It’s a stately, carved 6″ wide quartersawn white oak compound mitered profile with a gilt liner. Just a couple days later, as I recall, Carol emailed an image of “Metamorphosis” and asked if we’d like to include it in the show. Seeing the dimensions, Jessie and I could hardly believe our luck.

When the painting arrived, we immediately placed it in the frame. Simply put, the two completed each other. The frame’s color is perfectly harmonious as a warm, surrounding window frame in shadow; the wood and carving suit the rustic subject matter; while the frame’s mass and decorative detail express and sustain the artist’s spirit of reverence for this Northern California ranch set in oak-covered hills.

“Metamorphosis” is a work of passion and praise for that place, but also a plea for its preservation. I find it greatly rewarding that the painting found its way so naturally to a frame made for precisely the responsibility of keeping such devotional works firmly fixed before the eyes of folks fortunate enough to live in its midst.

“Beloved California IV: Twenty Artists with a Passion for Place” opens this Saturday, November 16, with a reception from 4 to 6 for the artists, including Carol Peek. We hope you’ll join us—and come see “Metamorphosis” in person, as well as more than fifty other outstanding paintings.


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