The Adams County Arts Council’s 11th Annual Juried Art Exhibition has gathered an impressive selection of creative talent from across Pennsylvania and nearby states.
Steve Dolbin, a juror for the event and professor and chairperson of the Department of Art and Design at Shippensburg University, has selected work from over 40 artists in a delightful array of media for exhibition at Gettysburg College’s Schmucker Art Gallery.
The Adams County Arts Council, wincorporated in 1993, has evolved from a small group of organizers into a nonprofit arts organization, with a membership of more than 600 supporters. The council’s mission is to cultivate an arts-rich community, with its primary goals being to provide high quality arts in education opportunities for students of all ages and to support local arts presenters, schools and artists.
This year’s display has assembled such a variety of art that it rivals that of museums many times larger. Upon entering the space, one comes upon “The Little Bulloo Pill” by Rob Millard-Mendez. The bright blue bull sits at eye level. Its rounded diamond shape alludes to another contemporary symbol of virility. The symbolism is not lost and leaves the viewer with a chuckle.
Two wall hangings at either end of the gallery have Pop Art influences. “Try, Try Again” by Chris Lauer is a brightly colored homage to the classic Rubik’s Cube puzzle with a decidedly Mondrian look. Barrie Spessler’s “Depth of Fields” is a three-dimensional wood assemblage with small squares in muted tones of gray and tan intricately placed in a form very reminiscent of the 1960s decor.
Several more traditional media are represented. “Open Until Midnight” by Rebecca Yates Shorb is a pastel piece, which effectively uses the smeared and blended colors to represent an out of focus rainy street scene. Anne H. Finucane’s “Road Through the Valley” is an etching with aquatint that gives the rural road scene an antique, sepia tone. Colored pencils were used by Amy V. Lindenberger to draw “Witness Tree at Devil’s Den.” The delicate colors make the Gettysburg scene look like a faded photograph.
Two exquisite sculptures done in high fire clay by Deborah Williams represent the expressive faces of different women. “Betrayed” portrays a young woman’s haunting forward gaze. “The Singer” captures a beautiful chanteuse mid-song — her face is offset by contrasting white flowers in her hair. Both faces are bronze colored, with delicate features that could be likened to the young girls sculpted by Degas.
There are several unique uses of paper by artists. Edward Babiarz employs artist made paper to form a three-dimensional paper sculpture of sparkling copper. The layers and folds of “Origin” seem to reveal the strata of the earth.
The art of cut paper collage is exemplified in the works of Joseph Opshinsky. Both “Farm Equipment” and “Notch View” use bright pop-colored paper precisely cut to create scenes as realistic looking as a Photoshopped images by a contemporary photographer.
Photographer Vince Bruinsma manipulates, “Glimpse,” his photograph of a woman surrounded by rich red leaves, by weaving the paper upon which the image is printed to give the resulting piece a textural quality.
Joh Ricci’s “Tangled Up Puppet” is a fiber-knotted nylon creation. The result is a chalice-like form that could also resemble a bird’s nest as it is perched upon a wooden stand. A glimpse inside reveals the decoupage of cryptic words on the interior. A nearly invisible nylon web crisscrosses the top. The mystery of the “Tangled Up Puppet” is only rivaled by the superb craftsmanship.
The organizers and Juror Dolbin are to be applauded for assembling not only an outstanding body of quality work but also for the interesting variety of media and execution.
The Adams County Arts Council’s 11th Annual Juried Art Exhibition is on display through June 22 at Schmucker Art Gallery, Gettysburg College. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and until 7 p.m. on June 13 and 14.
The exhibition is held in partnership with Schmucker Art Gallery, www.gettysburg.edu/gallery, and the Gettysburg Fest, http://gettysburgfestival.org, an annual celebration of arts, culture and cuisine that runs from June 11 to June 15. The public is invited to the awards reception from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, June 13, with awards announced at 6 p.m.
The Schmucker Art Gallery is on the main floor of Gettysburg College’s Schmucker Hall, located at the intersection of North Washington and Water streets in Gettysburg. Admission is free, as is parking in visitor lots on campus.
Joseph George holds a degree in history and art history from Dickinson College. He and his wife, Barrie Ann have spent much of their 20 years together travelling and visiting art galleries locally and throughout the world. Their tastes range from fine art to street art.