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Museum Of Art Presents Exhibitions Featuring Former Art Faculty and Alumni Jan. 29

January 19, 2011

Works by six former studio faculty members from the department of art and art history, as well as 44 alumni, are the focus of two new exhibitions opening at the Museum of Art on Jan. 29, 2011. The exhibitions, “Legacy: Works by Distinguished Former Faculty”and“ReView: Recent Work by UNH Alumni”present drawings, ceramics, paintings, photography, sculpture, and textiles from artists across the country.  

The exhibitions open with a public preview reception Friday, Jan. 28, from 5 to 7 p.m.  
“Legacy: Works by Distinguished Former Faculty” features drawings, paintings, photography, and woodworking by six renowned studio former faculty members, including Sigmund Abeles, Arthur Balderacchi, Christopher C. Cook, Richard D. Merritt, Daniel Loomis Valenza, and Melvin J. Zabarsky. The exhibition presents a glimpse at the scope and range of work created by each artist at different points in their careers.

Professor emeritus of art Sigmund Abeles, (AB, University of South Carolina,1955; MFA, Columbia University, 1957), retired in 1987 after 27 years of teaching at the University, and currently resides and works in New York City. His works − in pastels, oils, graphic media, and sculpture − focus primarily on the expressive and psychological aspects of the human figure and animals. As part of the Museum of Art’s Sunday Salon Series, Abeles will present a discussion on his professional experiences as a distinguished educator, and his personal development as a figurative artist. The talk, Recollections: Teaching the Arts, UNH 1970-1989, will take place on Sunday, Feb. 13, at 1 p.m. in the Museum of Art. The program is open to the public free of charge.

Arthur Balderacchi, professor emeritus of art (AB, Duke University, 1960; MFA, University of Georgia, 1965), retired from the university after 37 years of teaching a variety of subjects, including bronze casting, life sculpture, and drawing. His works are inspired by the beauty of nature, reflected in his carefully rendered images of both landscapes and human forms.

Christopher C. Cook (BA, Wesleyan University, 1954; MFA, University of Illinois, 1959) taught at UNH from 1957 to 1964. For the next 34 years, Cook worked as artist, teacher, administrator, and curator at Phillips Academy of Andover Massachusetts and its renowned Addison Gallery of American Art, retiring in 1998. His work explores the language and materials of art, and the complexity of human experiences.

Richard D. Merritt, associate professor emeritus of art (Rochester Institute of Technology, 1948), began his career at the university as an instructor of the arts, and taught photography until his retirement in 1986. He was the founding president of the University Photographers Association of America, and was one of the first photographers to be accepted by the N.H. Art Association. His photographs examine his interest in blending form and content, and “mark making” as a form of self-expression.

Daniel Loomis Valenza, professor emeritus of art (BFA, Rochester Institute of Technology, 1958; MFA, Rochester Institute of Technology, 1966), began his forty-year teaching career at UNH in 1959. As a professional designer and craftsman, Valenza credits the development of his work to the influence of his instructors, mentors, and colleagues, as well as long-standing interest in classical music.

Melvin J. Zabarsky, professor emeritus of art (BFA, Boston University, 1958; MFA, University of Cincinnati, 1960) began his 28-year tenure at the university.  His paintings reflect his fascination with the human figure and its narrative implications and a long-standing interest in collage.

Editors: Images for Legacy: Works by Distinguished Former Faculty include:

715121821@14012011-221CArthur Balderacchi, At the Edge of the Marsh, 2010, ink on paper, 11” x 29 3/8”

http://www.unh.edu/art-gallery/images/Editors_Legacy/Arthur Balderacchi At the Edge of the Marsh, 2010, ink on paper, 11 x 29 three eights.jpg




Christopher Cook, Plato’s Models, 2004, acrylic on panel, 24” x 22”

http://www.unh.edu/art-gallery/images/Editors_Legacy/Christopher Cook, Plato_s Models, 2004, acrylic on panel, 24 x 22.jpg


Daniel Valenza, Bowl, 1956, American black walnut.2 7/16”x 8 7/8”

http://www.unh.edu/art-gallery/images/Editors_Legacy/Daniel Valenza, Bowl, 1956, American black walnut.2 seven sixteenth x 8 seven eights.jpg

Melvin Zabarsky, Mother Earth, 1993-94, oil and collage on canvas, 50” x 60”


“ReView: Recent Work by UNH Alumni”features 70 recent works by 44 alumni from across the country. This juried exhibition includes drawings, ceramics, mixed media, paintings, photography, sculpture, and textiles.

Artists featured in the exhibition include: Gary Ambrose (Denmark, ME); James Aponovich ( Hancock, NH); Brad Archambault (Derry, NH); Jamie Bowman (Boston, MA); Sarah Meyers Brent (Cambridge, MA); Sarah Burns (New Durham, NH); Sam Cady (Friendship, ME); Trisha Coates (Newmarket, NH); Diane Jackson Cole (Pembroke, NH); Suzie Dittenber (Portsmouth, NH); Christopher Dolan (Washington, D.C.); Judith Doughty (West Nottingham, NH); Aaron Drew (Tuscaloosa, AL); Dara Engler (Monroe, LA); Elise Freda (Callicoon, NY); Brett Gamache (Londonderry, NH); Thomas Park Glover (Rochester, NH); Roger Goldenberg (Portsmouth, NH); Christopher Gowell (Eliot, ME); Elizabeth A. Hallett (Brooklyn, NY); Don Hirst (Seattle, WA); Sean Hurley (Gloucester, MA); Andrea Jacobson (Nashville, TN); Mathew Kelly (Pella, IA); Emily Leonard Trenholm (Cambridge, MA); Jesse Lindenberger-Schutz (New York, NY); Graham Loper (Baltimore, MD); Beverly Lussier (Center Barnstead, NH); Erin McKenny (North Bennington, VT); Tara Misenheimer (Exeter, NH); K.Lee Mock (Portsmouth, NH); James Mullen (Brunswick, ME); Catherine Nash (Tucson, AZ); Dustin O'Hara (Stephens City, VA); Sherry Palmer (Rochester, NH);  Adam Pearson (Barrington, NH); Gregory Poulin (Dover, NH); Janvier Rollande (Orr's Island, ME); Alan Rushing (Newmarket, NH); Deborah Russell (Center Strafford, NH); Nicole McCormick Santiago (Williamsburg, VA); Gary Haven Smith (Northwood, NH); Elizabeth Strasser (Sherborn, MA); and Nathan Webster (Stratham, NH). In memoriam, works by Richard G. McKown and Donna Suprenant are also included.

Jurors for “ReView: Recent Work by UNH Alumni” were artists James Aponovich (Hancock) and Gary Haven Smith (Northwood).

Aponovich, (‘71), is an internationally renowned painter whose subjects range from distinctive still life compositions to idyllic Italianate landscapes.  He received the prestigious honor of serving as the Granite State’s distinguished Artist Laureate from 2006-10.

Smith (BFA,’73) creates large-scale sculptural works from natural rocks and boulders. Each piece is then shaped and cut into textural reliefs until a balance is created between the solidity of the materials and the fluidity of the form. A work by Smith, “Dance of the Ray” (2002, granite, 49” x 18” x 14”), was recently purchased by the Museum of Art as part of its permanent collection, and is located at the entrance of the Paul Creative Arts Center. Both jurors are included at the director’s prerogative.

Several of the exhibiting artists from “Review: Recent Work by UNH Alumni”will present talks about their development as artists, their techniques, influences, and works as part of the Museum of Art’s ongoing ArtBreak series of public programs. TheBrown Bag Lectures will take place on many Wednesdays from noon – 1 p.m., including Feb. 2 and 16, March 2, 9, and 23 and April 6.


Jamie Bowman, Hydrangeas I, 2010, oil on canvas, 20” x  20”





 Janvier Rollande, Portrait of Sage, 2008, graphite, 17 1/4” x 12 ¼”



James Mullen, Thomas Bay MDI, 2009, oil on canvas, 12” x 48”






Trisha Coates, Double Chambered Endive Teapot, 2009, stoneware, 7” x 10’ x 4”






Adam Pearson, Piercing, 2010, steel, 66” x 58” x 39”





Dustin O'Hara, The Cloud Break, 2010, oil on panel, 5 ¾” x 8” jpg

The two exhibitions are presented as part of Arts for Life, a year-long celebration of the fine and performing arts in the Paul Creative Arts Center, supported in part by the Office of the President of UNH, Office of the Provost, Office of the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, University Advancement, the Class of 1936 Endowment for Cultural Enrichment, and the Friends of the Museum of Art. Both exhibitions will be on view through April 6, 2011. The Museum of Art and its programs are open to the public free of charge.

The Museum of Art is open during the academic year: Monday-Wednesday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; and Saturday and Sunday, 1-5 p.m.; closed Fridays, and University holidays.  Guided group tours for schools and other organizations are available with advance reservation by contacting Catherine A. Mazur, education and publicity coordinator, at catherine.mazur@unh.edu or 2-3713.

For more information, contact the Museum of Art at 2-3712, or by e-mail at museum.of.art@unh.edu. Visit the website for updated information on exhibitions, programs, and events at www.unh.edu/moa.


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