“Us and Them: Works by Deborah Rockman” on Exhibit Sept. 26-Oct.28
A new exhibit, “Us and Them: Works by Deborah Rockman,” opens at the MCC Overbrook Art Gallery on Sept. 26 and will continue through Oct. 28.
Free and open to the public, the exhibit is linked to the Muskegon Area Arts and Humanities Festival (ahFest), which explores this year’s theme of “Us and Them” through a range of cultural events occurring at various community locations during National Humanities Month.
Deborah Rockman, an artist and teacher for over 35 years, is professor of art in the BFA and MFA drawing programs at Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids. She has been a visiting artist at Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, Elon University in North Carolina, Northern Illinois University in Illinois, Bowling Green State University in Ohio, and Coastal Carolina University in South Carolina. She was honored as one of 100 Outstanding Art Alumni at Western Michigan University’s Centennial Celebration.
Her award-winning work in drawing, collage, mixed media, and digital media has been exhibited in numerous group and solo exhibitions at venues throughout the U.S. and China, including ARC Gallery (Chicago), Artemisia Gallery (Chicago), Rockford Art Museum (IL), South Bend Museum of Art (IN), Fort Wayne Museum of Art (IN), Cabrillo Gallery (CA), Midland Museum of Art (MI), Peninsula Fine Arts Center (VA), Contemporary Arts Workshop (Chicago), Ontario College of Art and Design (Canada), and Meilidao International Art Institution in Shanghai, China.
Rockman has been awarded fellowships to a number of artists-in-residence programs, including The Radgale Foundation (IL), The Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (VA), Cummington Community for the Arts (MS), Mary Anderson Center for the Arts (IN), and The Vermont Studio Colony (VT).
She has lectured by invitation at national and international venues, including The Fifth Congress of the Americas in Puebla, Mexico, the 93rd Annual College Art Association (CAA) Conference in Atlanta, the 90th Annual College Art Association Conference in Philadelphia, the 83rd Annual College Art Association Conference in San Antonio, and the MAEA Statewide Conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
In 2008, she was invited to exhibit in The Figure Revealed: Contemporary American Figurative Paintings and Drawings at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts. In 2008, 2005, and 2000 she was awarded Best of Show in the Regional Juried Art Exhibition at Muskegon Museum of Art. In 2006, she exhibited in the 2006 Biennial: Contemporary American Realism at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art in Indiana. She has been honored with three retrospective exhibitions of her work at the Midland Museum of Art in Michigan, Kendall College of Art and Design in Michigan, and Coastal Carolina University in South Carolina.
In addition to her studio work, which explores social/cultural critique, Rockman is the author of two books: The Art of Teaching Art and Drawing Essentials: A Complete Guide to Drawing, both published by Oxford University Press.
A free public reception will be held in the Overbrook Art Gallery on Tuesday, Oct. 18 from 6-7:30 p.m. featuring a gallery talk by the artist at 6:30 p.m.
Overbrook Art Gallery is located on the Muskegon Community College main campus, 221 S. Quarterline Road. Hours are 9 a.m. –4 p.m. Monday-Friday with special weekend and evening hours during performances of “Avenue Q: The Musical” in the adjacent Overbrook Theater on Oct. 12-16. Contact the Arts and Humanities Department at (231) 777-0324 for details.
“Works by Ken Foster and Lisa Medendorp” in Overbrook Gallery Nov. 7-Dec. 2
Muskegon Community College’s Overbrook Art Gallery highlights the work of retired MCC art instructor Ken Foster and MCC art alumna Lisa Medendorp from Nov. 7 through Dec. 2, 2016.
A free public reception will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 16, from 6-7:30pm with a gallery talk by the artists at 6:30pm. Overbrook Gallery hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday with special weekend and evening hours during performances and concerts in the adjacent Overbrook Theater. For more information, call (231) 777-0324.
The artists’ works share intriguing relationships of form and concept. Both artists have a respect for the environment as revealed in the repurposing of discarded materials in Foster’s assemblages and by the theme that underlies Medendorp’s paintings.
The use of interwoven shapes in both artists’ works symbolically echoes the interconnected web of nature.
Foster physically weaves together reclaimed materials such as brightly colored cable wire, plastic hose, rope, and scrap metal onto metal grid supports. This process, known as “upcycling,” takes objects of low value and transforms them into a work of greater aesthetic and material value and importance.
Medendorp’s series of paintings feature totemic, slightly figurative forms that suggest tribal art influences in which shapes interweave and morph together. The artist describes these figures as “’Lake Marchers – mythological defenders of the natural environment who march across Lake Michigan with the ever-changing weather patterns.”
Foster and Medendorp have shown their work throughout west Michigan and have received numerous awards in juried competitive exhibitions. However, this show represents a rare opportunity to see a large number of their pieces together in one location.