During the course of his artistic career, Gary Milek has lived and worked in Hartford, Boston, Amsterdam, New York City, and Hanover. Since 1974, however, the artist and his wife Sarah, a talented horticulturalist, have owned and operated Cider Hill Gardens in Windsor, Vermont, where they grow pollinator-friendly plants and flowers using sustainable methods. This respect for the earth is reflected in Gary’s art, particularly in his application of gold leaf. In the words of Robert McGrath, Professor Emeritus of Art History at Dartmouth, “His use of gold leaf…is derived from late-medieval and early-Renaissance art, yet Milek employs that spiritualized medium not to symbolize Paradise but, rather, Heaven on Earth. Inverting the traditional hierarchy, he deploys the gold leaf for the foreground and middle distance rather than the sky. The intent is clearly to denote that Vermont is the earthly Paradise.”
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Collection of the artist, Vermont
Illuminated: Paintings in Egg Tempera & Gold Leaf by Gary Milek, Vose Galleries, Boston, October 27 – December 7, 2020 (exhibition was extended)