Denison Art Gallery Opens Season With Paintings By Six Artists
Posted: August 30, 2001
The Denison University Art Gallery will open its 2001/2002 season with a show of paintings by six artists. "Painting: Inside, Outside and Beyond" will open on Friday (Sept. 7) with a reception for the artists from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Burke Hall Gallery (236 W. Broadway). The Gallery is open daily from 1 to 4 p.m. This show, which is free and open to the public, will be exhibited through Sunday, Oct. 21.
The six artists whose works will be shown are: Anita Dawson, Christian Faur, Stephen Fessler, David Harmon, Clayton Merrell and Armin Muhsam. "For this kick-off show, the artists present their unique visions through various approaches to painting while exploring still life, landscape and conceptual imagery," says Lee Hanford, acting director of the Gallery. "Traditional painting and mixed media have been their predominant vehicles for expression via a very contemporary mode."
Dawson, chairman of the drawing and printmaking department at the Columbus College of Art and Design, has had solo exhibitions at the A.R.C. Gallery in Chicago, and Kishwaukee College (Malta, Ill.), as well as being a featured artist in the Collector's Gallery of the Columbus Museum of Art. "In both the paintings on canvas and the mixed media pieces, I explore beauty through the use of color and lush materials," Dawson says.
Faur is inspired by the existential works of Beckett, Kafka and Eliot. A native of Manhattan, N.Y., he has had solo shows at the Ohio Art League gallery in Columbus, Cruz LA Gallery in Venice, Calif. and the Hello Artichoke Gallery in Santa Monica, Calif. Faur uses stencils to impart detailed information, such as numeric patterns and text while providing the vehicle for many of the metaphors that are present within each painting.
Fessler, who taught at Ohio Wesleyan University, has also served as an artist-in-residence in the Athens school district and as a guest lecturer and critic at Northern Kentucky University, Otterbein College, and Louisburg College (N.C.). He has exhibited his works in the Trinity Gallery (Atlanta), the Butler Institute of American Art (Youngstown), and the residence of the American Ambassador in New Delhi, India. Fessler tacks his studio dropcloths onto the wall once they've become sufficiently splattered with paint and then searches the surface for suggestions. "I'll find something gazing back at me from within a tangle of marks, and paint to free it," says Fessler.
Harmon is currently director of the art department and professor at Bethel College (Mishawaka, Ind.). He also serves on the faculty at Indiana University. Harmon won Best of Show award at the Third Biennial Exhibition in La Porte, Ind. and first place in painting at the Sacred Arts Exhibition at Wheaton College, Ill. "Harmon works with pastel paints and involves traditional still life subject matter in an unconventional contemporary manner," says Hanford of his works.
Merrell has served as a visiting artist at Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh) and Truman State University (Kirksville, Mo.) and has recently served a residency at the Blue Mountain (N.Y.) Center. He has had solo exhibitions in Pittsburgh, Raleigh, N.C., Oaxaca, Mexico, and Provo, Utah, among other cities. In 1995 he earned the Binney & Smith Emerging Artist of the Year Award. Hanford describes Merrell's works as dealing with matters "beyond," while representing natural objects from this world. "He employees large oil canvases, often producing diptychs," she says. "He creates an atmospheric, ethereal sense by placing floating objects in space."
Muhsam juxtaposes technologically-oriented architectural features against natural backdrops. "He paints streamlined contemporary landscapes primarily rendered in acrylics," says Hanford.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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