BY ALICIA GREGA
Even if you think you know nothing about art, you probably recall seeing Edward Hopper’s famous 1942 painting “Nighthawks,” glimpsing a couple of suited men and a svelte redhead through the glass windows of a 24-hour diner in the quiet early morning hours. An exhibit opening Saturday at Misericordia University’s Pauly Friedman Art Gallery showcases the artist’s early works in charcoal, pen and ink, pencil, and graphite. “Edward Hopper: Early Impressions,” includes drawings dating back to 1897 when the artist was only 17-years-old. Born in Nyack, NY, Hopper often used himself as a model in this early work, depicting himself as “skinny, ungraceful and homely,” according to a press release issued by the gallery. Early etchings strove to capture the urban vibe of streets in Paris and New York City. After relocating to Greenwich Village in 1931, he worked as an illustrator for the movie industry, the influence of the cinema bleeding into his personal fine art works. This was the same time his museums began to invest in his paintings, despite the uncertain economics of The Great Depression. When he died in 1967, Hopper was generally regarded as the preeminent painter in the style of American Realism.
On display in the adjacent MacDonald Art Gallery are two exhibits: Winslow Homer: Woodcut Prints and a display of recent works and Weatherly-based realist Michael Molnar. Homer trained as an apprentice under a commercial lithographer in Boston before working as freelance as an illustrator for various magazines, specializing in engravings depicting life in rural and urban New England. Eventually he gave up illustration for watercolor, capturing the scenes of his almost constant travels across America to Canada and Bermuda.
A native of Hazleton, Molnar specializes in portraits and still life with painstaking attention paid to detail. He studied painting with an emphasis on the “Old Masters” at Maryland Institute of Art and privately under the guidance of several accomplished artists. His work has been exhibited at museums and galleries in Ohio, Texas, and New York state as well as Pennsylvania. Currently, he is a professor of painting and illustration at Luzerne County Community College.
All three exhibits open with a reception Saturday from 5 to 8 p.m. The work will remain on display through March 4. Normal gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, and on Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. Call 674-6250 or visit www.misericordia.edu/art.
Scranton native Jennie Barrese studied at Keystone College before transferring to Syracuse and next month will return to the LaPlume school to share images from her recent series Collide. Featuring “elements of the human figure in strange and visually challenging arrangements,” courtesy of digital manipulation, the exhibit opens Feb. 5 at Linder Gallery in the Miller Library. A reception for the artist will be held on Sunday, Feb. 12 from 4 to 6 p.m. The artist’s work has previously been displayed in New York City and Jersey City, N.J., Washington, D.C., Savannah, Ga., and Syracuse, N.Y., as well as in shows in Pennsylvania. She will speak about her artwork on Monday, Feb.13 at 9:45 a.m. in the Hibbard Campus Center. The exhibition will remain on display through March 9 and can be viewed during library hours. Call 945-8335 or visit www.keystone.edu/lindergallery.
“Keuka Clouds” by Brian Keeler
“Keuka Clouds” is one of the dozens of water and color and pastel landscapes and townscapes on display in American Heartland through April 30. The exhibit opened at the Blue Heron Gallery in Wyalusing on Jan. 6. Among the regional artists participating in the show are Camille Doucet, Barbara Sowinski, Tom Wise, William Benson, Brian Keeler, Patricia Young, Carol Ast, Alice Laputka, Jan Henning,Steve Sliwinski and Dan Curry. Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and on most Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 746-4922 to confirm hours or for more information or visit the gallery online at www.wyalusingartgallery.com. Keeler will hold a one-day landscape workshop (Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m.) and painting demonstration (Friday 7 to 9 p.m.) this weekend at the Community School of Music and Art in Ithica, NY. Visit www.briankeeler.com or call 746-1187 to register or for more information.