Mel Pekarsky: Things in the Desert
Now through December 12 at the University Art Gallery
The University Art Gallery presents a one-person exhibit, Mel Pekarsky: Things in the Desert, on view at the University Art Gallery in the Staller Center now through Saturday, December 12. A color catalogue with an essay by renowned art critic and Distinguished Professor Donald Kuspit accompanies the exhibit and is available at the Gallery desk.
The exhibit includes large- and small-scale oil paintings, drawings, and an artist’s book produced by Professor Emeritus Pekarsky during his 35 years at Stony Brook as a professor of painting. He also served as Art Department Chair, MFA Director, and Studio Programs Director during his tenure.
Pekarsky’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States and Europe, including more than 30 solo exhibits in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco as well as group shows at such prestigious institutions as the Whitney Museum of American Art, The Brooklyn Museum, The Cleveland Museum of Art, the Cooper-Hewitt Museum, Musées Royeaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique, and the Kuznetsky Most Galleries in Moscow. His work is included in many public, corporate, and private collections. During his career, Pekarsky has received grants from the Bernhard Foundation; The Kaplan Fund; The U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare; The New York State Council on the Arts; and The National Endowment for the Arts.
A trip to the Mojave Desert in 1972 inspired Pekarsky to adopt the desert as his main subject matter. His continuing search for a valid iconography had taken him from Chicago School figure painting to painting landscapes in which figures and groups of figures became increasingly smaller and, from there, to work focused on the desert itself in which the figure no longer played a part.
The University Art Gallery is located on the first floor of the Staller Center. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday, from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm, and Saturday, from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm. For more information, please call 632-7240.
(Image on homepage: Dry, mixed media/unstretched canvas, 122 x 192″, 1998)