A new show in Mercyhurst University’s Cummings Art Gallery showcases the work of artists who teach visual arts in the Millcreek Township School District.
The Millcreek Township School District Biennial Art Faculty Exhibit will remain on display through Oct. 28, with a public reception for the artists on Thursday, Oct. 11, from 7 to 9 p.m.
Participating artists include Timothy Blair and Robert V. Werder of McDowell Intermediate High School; Bethany Krowsoski and Michael Prather of McDowell High School; Jackie Platz, who teaches at both McDowell Intermediate and Belle Valley Elementary School; Jennifer Dunham of J.S. Wilson Middle School; and Maria Cross of Grandview and Chestnut Hill elementary schools.
Also featured are retired teachers Andrea Jacoby and Mary Rosiak of McDowell Intermediate and Marsha Langman Cisek of McDowell.
Millcreek Township was the first school district in the area to host such an art faculty exhibit, following the lead of nearby colleges and universities. Fourteen exhibits have been held, beginning in 1985 with a display at the Millcreek Education Center. The district’s aim is to attest to the philosophy that “those who CAN, teach.”
This year’s exhibit displays a wide variety of works in various media, from printmaking to photography to ceramics.
Ceramic works by Michael Prather have a commanding presence, each incorporating interesting detail. “I try to relate the surface design to the emotions and feelings of each individual piece,” he says. “Each piece tells a different story, therefore, the surface is tailored to that specific story. I have no rules when it comes to surface treatment. I will use underglazes, glossy finishes, smoked surfaces, spray, dip, or brush materials on, and whatever else is needed to bring out the true soul of each piece.”
Bethany Krowsoski’s five acrylic paintings bring to life a vivid study of brightly colored Koi fish.
Robert V. Werder’s prints feature colorful peppers, portraits, lilies and a colored pencil series of the four seasons, while Jackie Platz’s watercolors on aquaboard seem to be views of plants and flowers under a microscope.
Also of note are Marsha Langman Cisek’s two metal weavings that offer a fresh approach to sculpture using nuts, bolts and screws interwoven with wire and mounted on metal.
Cummings Gallery, located in the lobby of the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center, is open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday & Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m. The gallery will be closed Oct. 4-8 during the university’s fall break. Call 824-2092 for more information.
PHOTO: Robert Werder's 'Lilies'