Today is the last opportunity for museum visitors to view the exhibition of ultra realist sculpture by Marc Sijan at The Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown. The extraordinary exhibit pays tribute to the human form, re-creating human life in a startling ensemble.
These compelling works, which seem to be on the verge of speaking, have been among the most popular of the Butler's touring installations in recent years. The Butler's Marc Sijan realist sculpture exhibition was organized and traveled by Smith Kramer Fine Art Services of Kansas City, Missouri.
Sijan is a Milwaukee-based artist who earned a bachelor's degree in art in 1968 from the University of Wisconsin and a master of science in art from the same school three years later. His work has won him recognition with more than 40 solo shows nationwide.
According to the artist, "The human figure is one of the most challenging subjects with which to work. I am working to develop a niche of my own where I can develop a believable figurative sculpture that works not only on a visual level, but on a deeper more emotional level."
Celebrating differences: Unlike the idealized realist sculpture found first in the work of the ancient Greeks and Romans, Sijan's subjects are not always a celebration of the perfect human form. A sleepy security guard, an elderly shopper, a female weight lifter and a basketball star are all portrayed by Sijan as real people, and are an ingenious expression of the spirit of our times.
Sijan's method is to produce a negative mold in plaster from a live model. He then sculpts the interior with precision tools and a magnifying glass to ensure accuracy and the finest detail, and casts the figure with a polyester resin. The artist achieves realistic flesh tones by application of 25 coats of acrylic paint, varnish and finally oil paint with astonishing results that must be seen to be appreciated.
New York tour: Butler Director Dr. Louis Zona will again lead the Butler's annual New York City art tour set for Oct. 10 through 14.
The tour includes one night in the Hampton's and a visit to the Long Island residence and studio of 20th century abstract painter Jackson Pollock, whose life and work were recently chronicled by actor/director Ed Harris in the award-winning film "Pollock."
Then it's on to the Big Apple for Zona's personal tour of the Whitney Museum of American Art, and that museum's much-heralded reinstallation of its magnificent collection. Behind-the-scenes visits to noted galleries, including the famous Nancy Hoffman Gallery in Soho, as well as a trip to sculptor Don Gummer's new Manhattan studio are also included in this once-in-a-lifetime tour.
All of this and much, much more -- including great food, shopping and superb accommodations -- are included in this fall trip organized exclusively for The Butler by Burger Travel of Youngstown.
For information and/or a complete itinerary call (330) 744-5035.
Film screenings: At 1:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Butler's Zona Auditorium, the screening of the PBS American Visions saga continues with "Streamlines and Breadlines," in which Time magazine art critic Robert Hughes finds the art of the jazz age to be some of the most original and exuberant of the 20th century. Art Deco, the New Deal, and the work of Edward Hopper and Jacob Lawrence are chronicled in this one-hour episode.
Also Wednesday, the Cinemuse film "World Music 3 Live Compas: Tabou Combo" will be screened.
This high-definition, one-hour film features the best known exponents of the compas style of Haitian pop music.
Tabou Combo has been Haiti's musical ambassador to the world for a generation. This show captures them on a particularly "hot, hot" night in New York City, beguiling longtime fans and the uninitiated alike.
Cinemuse, based in Robert DeNiro's Tribeca FilmCenter in New York City, is one of the most experienced and best-positioned high-definition companies.
With high-definition programs, viewers experience an incomparable combination of vivid colors, clarity, brightness and depth. The programs contain more than four times the resolution and clarity of conventional video. High-definition projection surpasses most film projection because it is free of flicker, shake, deterioration or fading.
Watch for more Cinemuse programming at the Butler this coming year. The Butler is one of three museums nationally equipped to show Cinemuse programs. These films are presented in cooperation with PBS 45/49 and Youngstown State University.
XButler hours in Youngstown are Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Butler hours at the Trumbull branch are Wednesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Butler Salem hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission to all three facilities is free.