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Fresh Take by Amy Sabrin

  • Touchstone Gallery 901 New York Avenue Northwest Washington, DC, 20001 United States (map)

Primehook Marsh II, Watercolor, 22”x 30”

On display November 2 - December 2, 2018
Opening Reception: Friday, November 2, 6 - 8:30pm
Fresh Take by Amy Sabrin

Lawyer-turned-artist Amy Sabrin distills the elements of coastal topography to dynamic shapes, values and vivid hues in her fresh, modern take on watercolor. Bordering on the abstract, these landscapes capture the light and feel of beach, bay, marsh and sky, with a minimum of information and a bravura approach to color. 

Sabrin has spent all or part of every summer of her life on the beaches of eastern Long Island and, more recently, the Atlantic coast of Delaware.  She spends many hours there painting outside, absorbing the atmosphere and landscape, until they become part of her painting-muscle memory.  Rarely do these efforts result in a finished product however; instead, she returns to her studio to extract the essence of this experience and reduce it to essential elements.   A dazzling colorist, she relies on subtle shifts in bright color fields to communicate the distinctive ambiance of coastal light.

Sabrin comes to making art after a distinguished 25-year career as a white collar criminal defense lawyer and a partner in the Washington office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom, LLP.  Among numerous cases, she defended President Clinton in Jones v. Clinton, and served as counsel to the commission appointed by then Virginia Governor Tim Kaine to investigate the tragic mass shooting at Virginia Tech.  Prior to law school, she was a journalist for eight years, primarily with the Associated Press Radio Network.  She has a J.D. from George Washington University and a Masters in Communications from Stanford.

Her interest in making art, however, extends back to her childhood, and she majored in art history at Wellesley College. Throughout her career, Sabrin painted when she could, and retired in 2011 with the aim of developing her skills as a visual artist. In 2015, she became a juried member of the Potomac Valley Watercolorists, and the following year was selected for membership in Touchstone Gallery.  Her works have appeared in many juried shows, and several have won prizes, including:

  • Best in Show – Watercolor for “Shadow Play”, The Art League Gallery, Alexandria, VA Open Exhibit, December 2017;

  • Best in Show – Watercolor for “Glen Echo Creek”, The Art League Gallery, Alexandria, VA Open Exhibit, October 2017; and

  • Third Prize for “Reflections in the Bethany Loop Canal,” Bethany Beach Plein Air Competition, October 2017.

More of her work may be viewed at