posted September 30, 2002

Gallery Features McCombs Campus Paintings

 The gallery of the De Pree Art Center at Hope College will feature an exhibition of watercolor paintings of campus by Bruce McCombs of the art faculty beginning Friday, Oct. 11.

The public is invited.

Scheduled in conjunction with the college's Homecoming Weekend, the exhibition will feature an opening reception on Friday, Oct. 11, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. The event will feature a lecture by the artist, "A View to a View."

The public is invited to both the opening and the exhibition. Admission is free.

Over the last three years, McCombs has created a series of 40 new works depicting the buildings of Hope College. The De Pree gallery will be showcasing the project for the first time.

McCombs' watercolors fit into the photorealist tradition. The new works are not "views" in the traditional sense of visual records of the buildings. Rather, they are excerpted details and surprising perspectives, sometimes of small or inconspicuous minutiae.

In the words of his colleague, Del Michel, "On closer inspection of these works, we are invited to explore more elusive qualities. He opens our eyes and our imaginations to see the ordinary in a unique and extraordinary manner. Banners hanging under the glass in the Kletz become foils for light and shadow patterns at once absorbing and reflecting the strong light streaming through the overhead windows. In another painting we see a bird's eye view of the pews, tile floors and stained glass windows of Dimnent Chapel. Pausing to adjust our eyes we suddenly realize what we are seeing... strong patterns, exaggerated perspective, visual abstraction... but also a sense of place."

McCombs has been a member of the Hope art faculty since 1969. He has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in the United States and in 12 countries around the world. His work is found in the most important art collections in the country, including the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.

The exhibition will run through Sunday, Nov. 17. The gallery's regular hours are Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

The De Pree Art Center is located on Columbia Avenue at 12th Street. The gallery is handicapped accessible.

Additional information may be obtained by calling (616) 395-7500.