“Mapping Memory: Jon Schueler Skyscapes” at the Wallace L. Anderson Gallery, Bridgewater State University (BSU) is the inaugural exhibition to mark the Centenary of the birth of the American Artist, Jon Schueler (1916-1992). Schueler’s commitment to arts education – he was a visiting artist and teacher at the Maryland Institute, Baltimore, the University of Illinois and the Yale University School of Art - makes BSU a particularly fitting venue. The Anderson Gallery's curatorial goal “to establish an environment of learning, enrichment and inspiration with exhibitions that illuminate the direct relationship between the Arts and Ideas,” is in keeping with the artist’s own ethos. This shared vision permeates the exhibition, encouraging both students and visitors to actively participate in the paintings, exploring their own ideas and thoughts, moods and memories in response to the art.
Art Historian and Co-Curator Diana Ewer introduces the exhibition Mapping Memory: Jon Schueler Skyscapes.
A selection of seven skyscapes from the 1970s and early 1980s drawn entirely from the artist’s estate, the exhibition includes a rarely seen significant trilogy Changes (A), (B) & (C), 1976. Painted a year after two seminal museum shows for the artist in 1975 - a solo show at the Whitney Museum of American Art and a three-man show “Landscapes, Interior and Exterior: Avery, Rothko and Schueler” at the Cleveland Museum of Art - this dramatic series embodies a lifetime ambition to capture from memory the evocative and fleeting moods of the sky on canvas.
Schueler’s skyscapes are as fresh and vibrant as the day they were painted. Moving from one painting to the next, we feel compelled to follow the artist’s delicately wistful, yet powerful brushstrokes. They pull us in, through layers of light and shadow, through the sky and beyond. Rich buttery yellows, pulsating reds and soft powdery blues invite us to step into and be consumed by an enthralling transformative world. Everything is moving. Nothing is still.
Excerpt from the essay by Diane Ewer that accompanies the exhibition catalogue.