The Newman University Steckline Gallery will present "Books and Cardboard Portraits" by artist Deloss McGraw as the final show of its 2011-2012 season. The exhibit, which begins with a Final Friday reception from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, April 27, will be on display through May 18. Both the reception and admission to the gallery are free and open to the public.
An "Art for Lunch" presentation by McGraw will be held Tuesday, May 1 from noon to 1 p.m. in the gallery. A light lunch will be served on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests can also bring their lunch. This event is also free and reservations are not required.
McGraw, painter and poet, moved from his native Oklahoma to California to pursue his dream in art at California State University, Long Beach and the Otis Art Institute. In 1969, he earned a bachelor's degree from CSU, Long Beach, and in 1973 earned an MFA from Michigan's Cranbrook Academy of Art. Three years later McGraw discovered the work of W.D. Snodgrass, a Pulitzer Prize winning poet, which inspired McGraw to send Snodgrass paintings that incorporated the poet's text. Snodgrass, in turn, responded with new poems inspired by these images, and thus occurred a melding of media and ideas between the artists. Since then, McGraw has developed a pictorial style in which recognizable forms are morphed by his imagination into objects of poetic fancy.
His figuration has been inspired by a so-called 'outsider art,' particularly the work of American folk artists that McGraw had collected since his childhood. From those the artist's work has derived its rough-hewn quality. McGraw is very successful with his art being exhibited extensively throughout the United States and Europe. His work has received critical acclaim in more than 80 solo exhibitions and is collected by many museums across America.
The Steckline Gallery is located inside the De Mattias Fine Arts Center on the Newman campus, 3100 McCormick. The gallery is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., or by appointment. For more information, call 316-942-4291, ext. 2199.