John van Orsouw and Melissa Sarat
Windsor Whip Art Gallery
March 17th - April 21st, 2007

Views from the Opening Reception

Viewing Sarat's Painting

Bill and Johanne Celebrating Mardi Gras

John van Orsouw, Johanne Pesce and Melissa Sarat

Gallery View

Bill Pesce in front of Sarat's painting, Ritrina

Melissa, Johanne and John

Melissa Sarat
As strange as it may seem, we are doing some exciting Mardi Gras celebrating.
The reason for our novel event is that Melissa Ann Sarat, a Louisiana native now
living in Central New York,  will be showing her work along with artist
John van Orsouw.

You see, Melissa spent her first twelve years on the grounds of an insane asylum,
where her father was a psychologist and administrator. No, no, she didn’t meet
Vincent Van Gogh there, but her friendships and interactions with the hospital
patients led to Melissa’s distinctive and often-times bizarre expression in art.

Sarat says her work is akin to story telling. Her paintings are like a perpetual
Mardi Gras. Feathered masks appear in many canvases. Every inch of Sarat’s
paintings is overflowing with things. Her female figures are up to their necks in
objects. Fish, exotic birds, frogs, a profusion of everything, from Tabasco bottles,
glassware, an abundance of food and flesh. One can almost smell the patchouli
and attar of roses--full of carnival gaiety, masterfully executed.

Melissa Ann Sarat ~ Evangeline, Mamma
and the Holy Ghost

John van Orsouw
John van Orsouw is a self-taught artist, born in 1954, and raised in the
Netherlands. John came to the United States in his early twenties. His first job
was working as a chef in The Grand Ol’ Opry Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee; other
jobs took him to New Orleans and throughout the Southern States.
His vibrant acrylic paintings and sculptures are influenced by a number of eclectic
sources which include children’s art and colorful toys, and the 20th Century Expressionists.

His works are filled with energy and imagination, a playful stream of consciousness,
but not without order and an intuitive sense of balance. When asked, how he goes
about planning his painting, John answers, “I don’t, I kind of make it up as I’m going”.

What ever his method, John’s works are full of spontaneous energy, innocence and
decadence, very much reminiscent of the expressionist Bill De Kooning.

John van Orsouw ~View more of John's work

Windsor Whip Works Art Gallery
98 Main Street, P.O. Box 7
Windsor, NY 13865

Gallery hours:
Friday, 3 to 6 p.m., Saturday & Sunday, 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. All other times,
call for an appointment: 607-655-2370


From east--NY Thruway to exit 16, take NY Route 17 west to exit 79. Right turn at the
stop sign then left at the blinking light. The gallery is on the right corner.
From west--NY Route 17 to exit 79. Left turn at the stop sign. Proceed to the blinking
light. The gallery is on the right corner.

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