Cummings Gallery shows recent work by art faculty

Monday, August 19, 2019

art heather denningMembers of the Mercyhurst University Art faculty – working artists themselves – will showcase their latest works in the Annual Art Faculty Exhibition in Cummings Gallery Aug. 19 through Sept. 14.

The show will include artworks by faculty members Daniel Burke, Tom Hubert, Gary Cardot, Jodi Staniunas Hopper, Peter Stadtmueller, and Heather Denning, along with guest artists Jessica Alesso, Patricia Czulewicz, Sarah Everett, and Deborah Sementelli.

The artists will be honored at a reception in the gallery on Thursday, Aug. 29, from 5 to 7 p.m.

Daniel Burke exhibits four new large-scale paintings on canvas. Although the compositions are superimposed over a grid, the overall feel is anything but rigid and mathematical. Playful, colorful energy resides in each square, with bold paint strokes neighboring an assemblage of dominos, game board cutouts, and deflated paint tubes. 

Five new ceramic pieces by Tom Hubert are on view, demonstrating Hubert’s creative exploration of vessel forms, lids, legs, and spouts. His standout piece, “Tall Two Lid Teapot,” has a curious, anthropomorphic feel.

Familiar images of the local landscape are given new perspective with Gary Cardot’s manipulation of color. A group of five photographs transform the ordinary into the surreal by pairing monochrome natural elements with beautifully odd skies in magenta and sea green. 

Heather Denning is showing a series of digital photos from her volunteer experience this summer at the Cheyenne River Youth Project in Eagle Butte, South Dakota. The photos document activities of the RedCan Graffiti Jam and highlight the spirit of girls and women of the Cheyenne River reservation and Lakota culture. 

Graphic designer Jodi Staniunas Hopper presents two intricate textile masks created using materials from four wedding gowns. The masks are displayed on glass heads with accompanying digital collages. 

An avid scuba diver, Peter Stadtmueller shares his underwater photographs of two wooden shipwrecks from the Straits of Mackinaw in Michigan, offering a glimpse into areas many are unable to witness.  

Also showing works are several adjunct faculty members: Sarah Everett, printmaking; Deborah Sementelli, figure drawing; Jessica Alesso, art education; and Patricia Czulewicz, art appreciation.

Cummings Gallery is open Monday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 3 p.m.; closed Sunday. The gallery will also be closed Labor Day weekend, Aug. 31-Sept. 2.

For more information, contact gallery director Jessica Stadtmueller at 814-824-2092 or

PHOTO: Art work by Heather Denning