DELAWARE, Ohio – Rod Bouc creates paintings and drawings that capture the ever-changing interplay of light and shadow as clouds churn through sky. Melinda Rosenberg produces sculptures inspired by the magic and mysteries ingrained in reclaimed wood.
Works by both of the Columbus, Ohio, artists will be showcased from Oct. 13 through Nov. 15 at Ohio Wesleyan University’s Richard M. Ross Art Museum, 60 S. Sandusky St., Delaware. Their exhibitions, “Nature’s Edge” by Bouc and “Old Farms – New Work” by Rosenberg, will open with a free, public artist reception from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 13.
Each artist earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from The Ohio State University, but Bouc earned his undergraduate degree in his home state of Nebraska and Rosenberg went on to study the Chinese language at Fu Jen University in Taipei, Taiwan. Both were strongly influenced by those additional life experiences.
“I am very interested in the way light and shadows can evoke emotions in the landscape,” Bouc states. “Nature works both as an image and a metaphor for my everyday life. The mood that is set sometimes reminds me of my ancestors and their history with the land. Sometimes it expresses inner emotions. I am always amazed at the way that I feel or the way that it lifts me out of myself.
“I have come to realize that paintings do the same thing,” Bouc continues. “You can look at repeatedly and come away with a different reaction each time. My subject matter is no longer a representation of my surroundings but a pursuit of how I express the feeling of what I saw.”
Of Bouc’s work, Columbus Dispatch art critic Christopher Yates has said: “Having grown up on a farm in Nebraska, he re-creates the rural Midwest through elaborate orchestrations of mark and texture. Though brightly colored, his works essentially are about value – with strong light and dark shades. The effect is stark, raw and a bit unsettling.”
Rosenberg said she spends considerable time searching for wood for her sculptures, often finding treasure troves in old barns in rural Ohio.
“I love how wood holds the memory of its growth within its grain, and how wood decays to reveal its growth structure,” she states. “Once I find the wood with the right texture or grain, I try to highlight the nature of the wood as I construct the piece.”
Dispatch critic Yates has noted the Asian influence in her artwork. “Rosenberg’s thinking is aligned with and influenced by Japanese aesthetics,” he has written. “Concepts such as wabi (subdued, transient beauty); sabi (rustic or aged beauty); and yugen (mysterious or graceful subtlety) are readily visible in her work. Her pieces require viewers to slow down and look carefully. It’s worth the effort.”
Ohio Wesleyan’s Richard M. Ross Art Museum is open Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The museum is wheelchair-accessible and admission is always free. Call (740) 368-3606 or visit ross.owu.edu for more information.
Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier small, private universities. Ohio Wesleyan offers more than 90 undergraduate majors, sequences, and courses of study, and 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. OWU combines an internationally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities that connect classroom theory with real-world practice. Located in Delaware, Ohio, OWU’s 1,850 students represent 41 states and 45 countries. The university is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” listed on the 2013 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction, and included on the “best colleges” lists of U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. Learn more at www.owu.edu.