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Stephen Black Art Exhibit 'Introspective Retrospective' Now on Display

Wabash Valley College is pleased to announce its opening exhibit for the year in the Brubeck Arts Center Gallery – “Introspective Retrospective,” Prints and Drawings  by artist Stephen Black.  This impressive exhibit will be on display through October 27.  A “Meet the Artist Reception” will be held on Sunday, October 22, from 3:30 to 5:30 in the Gallery. 

Commenting on his artwork, Black states…. “I love to draw.  I am also intrigued by formal and technical aspects of making art.  Printmaking offers so many exciting avenues to develop imagery through layered, variable, multiple, and sequential solutions.  I enjoy the challenge of recording an image and pushing its development to a level of refinement that risks destroying it.  Most of my color monotypes were printed by hand with ten or more different layers of ink to achieve the color value and depth I seek.  With each printed layer, one risks destroying the image.  I feel it is worth that risk to learn how far I can push the materials and imagery. 

Monotypes are basically one of a kind prints as they are essentially painted with ink on blank plates and then printed onto paper.  They are created much like the glaze technique in oil painting where several fine layers of color create light and depth in the image.  Cycles of birth, growth, decay and rebirth fascinate me.   The balance of what is gained and lost through these stages occupies my thoughts and creative energy.  I want to know how things work and fit together.  My images are observations of and symbols for life experiences:  relationships, thoughts, emotions, decisions, and revelations. 

Working with man-made and biological organic forms is interesting and exciting to me.  The human figure, container forms, fruit, seeds, and pods have so much visual potential structurally and symbolically.  I often look at the objects in my work as figures that have personalities, attitudes, thoughts, and feelings that they express through their building and growth patterns, surface texture, color, and structure. 

Moving back and forth between gestural and controlled imagery has always been my approach to making art.  To me these are two extreme ends of a single spectrum:  That spectrum includes truly seeing my subject and finding ways to recreate its presence and communicative potential no matter the media.”

Black, Chair of the Art Department at Vincennes University, has a Master of Fine Arts degree, Master of Arts, Bachelor of Fine Arts, and Diplome Superieur in Literature and Civilization Studies from Alliance Francaise, Paris, France.  He has served as Professor of Art and Design at VU since 1999.  His selected exhibitions and invitational portfolios  include Evansville, IN, New Harmony, IN, Oakland City, IN, University of South Dakota, Vermillion, California State University, Chico, CA, Chicago, IL, Kansas City, Kansas, McNeese State University, Lake Charles, LA, University of Texas, Lubbock, University of Wisconsin, East Tennessee State University, and others. 

His Professional Presentations have included conferences and workshops around the country.  Black’s selected collections include Turner Print Museum-California State University, Chico, California; Columbia House Records Incorporated-Terre Haute, Indiana; Kanagawa Arts Foundation-Yokohama, Japan; The Southern Graphics Council-Knoxville, Tennessee; Ohio University,  Athens, Ohio; and Georgia State College and University-Milledgeville, Georgia. 

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