FAYETTE, Iowa (November 6, 2008) -- The work of a regarded printmaker opens November 13 at Bing-Davis Memorial Art Gallery, Edgar Fine Arts Hall, on the Upper Iowa University Fayette campus.
America features 45 woodcut prints by New Jersey artist Paul Bonelli; the exhibit is largely influenced by the time the artist spent in the Midwest. Bonelli earned an MFA in printmaking in 1995 at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. He earlier studied art at the College of William and Mary and Montclair State University. Now an adjunct professor at Kean University, Union, NJ, and Ocean County College, Toms River, NJ, the artist has demonstrated his art and techniques at colleges around the country, including the Printmaking Council of New Jersey.
Bonelli's primary medium of expression for the past 18 years has been woodcut prints, which have been exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions across the nation. His prints are also in several important collections, including the Fogg Museum of Art at Harvard University and the New York Public Library.
"We are pleased to be able to bring the work of artist Paul Bonelli to Upper Iowa," said John Siblik, UIU associate professor of art and gallery director. "Along with our students, members of the university community and northeast Iowans in general will all find touchstones in his work."
Bonelli's prints reference everything from biology to history to religion to popular culture through imagery of common objects and situations. His appreciation of the artistic style in underground comics and vintage animated cartoons is evident in some of his work. Other pieces, like those in his Ecclesiastes series, contain strong Biblical references. He has also been inspired by hagiography (the study of the lives of saints) as seen in his Everyman (Saints) series, as well as American consumerism, evident in his Scenes From the Grand Opening (Super Market) series. In A New Year in America, which will be exihibited at Upper Iowa through December 18, Bonelli tackles the expansiveness of American culture, mentioning all 50 states in some way, thus giving e pluribus unuma whole new meaning.
The Lois Bing-Davis Gallery is free and open to the public from 8 a.m.--5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Bonelli's exhibit continues through December 18. Contact Siblik at 563-425-5241or e-mail email@example.com.
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