College gallery to show works of expressionist

Artist: The Mitchell Gallery at St. John's College will exhibit 45 illustrations by French artist Georges Rouault.

January 07, 1999|By Phil Greenfield | Phil Greenfield,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Plenty of emotion will be on display at the Mitchell Gallery at St. John's College in the coming weeks as the museum exhibits 45 illustrations by the French artist, Georges Rouault (1871-1958).

Rouault was an expressionist, an artist who abandoned traditional forms in favor of distorted shapes and colors designed to express visceral feelings and emotions.

Rouault left school in his early teens and worked as an apprentice in a stained-glass workshop.

The illustrations in the exhibition, on loan from the Syracuse University art collection, demonstrate that the darkly highlighted outlines and vibrant colors Rouault encountered as a young glass-maker never left his work.

As a student of Gustave Moreau (with his colleague Henri Matisse), Rouault found himself had little public following because of his penchant for painting clowns, prostitutes and social outcasts in a way that antagonized many viewers.

But in the 1930s, Rouault's work caught the eye of Ambroise Vollard, an art dealer and publisher who dealt in works by Van Gogh, Cezanne and Picasso. It was for Vollard that Rouault produced the etchings and engravings published in fine books such as "Cirque de l'Etoile Filante" (Circus of the Shooting Star), the volume that inspired the works on display at St. John's.

The opening reception for the Rouault exhibit will be held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 17 at the gallery. Art teacher Lucinda Edinberg will give a tour of the exhibition and conduct a printmaking activity for children. Printmaker Sigrid Trumpy will demonstrate printmaking techniques.

Jay Fisher, senior curator of prints, drawings, and photographs at the Baltimore Museum of Art, will give a lecture on the exhibit at the gallery at 7 p.m. Jan. 20.

Printmaker Cynthia Alderice will discuss Rouault's printmaking procedures in a Gallery Talk at 4 p.m. Feb. 17.

The exhibit, "Georges Rouault: Cirque de l'Etoile Filante," will be on display through Feb. 26. The Mitchell Gallery is open from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays. It is closed Mondays. Admission is free.

Information: 410-626-2556.

Pub Date: 1/07/99

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