‘In Violation of …’ on view Oct. 6–Oct. 29 at FSU’s Stephanie Ann Roper Gallery
What happens when five distinct artists combine their talents in a series of creative collaborations? An exhibition at Frostburg State University titled “In Violation of …” intends to find out. Featuring both individual and group works by Suzanne Donazetti, Maggy Wagner, Dotti Heimert, Larry Imes and Bob Corrigan, “In Violation of …” will be on view Oct. 6 through Oct. 29 at the Stephanie Ann Roper Gallery, with a free, public reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6.
“Artists are generally quite solitary when they work, and have full control of the creative process.” explained group spokesperson Donazetti. “When working collaboratively, these general rules are shattered. That’s why we titled our show ‘In Violation of…’”
In addition to five individual works from each artist, the show features several large pieces done in a group fashion. “We used different collaborative techniques, mostly out of necessity because we aren’t all located in the immediate area anymore.” said Donazetti, noting that several of the artists were Western Maryland residents who have now moved on to other parts of the country.
One large 15-foot canvas in the exhibition was painted “round-robin” style, circulating to each of the artists in turn. “We had no previous agreement about what the subject of the painting would be, who would do what to it … no rules at all. That’s a tricky way to create a painting,” Donazetti said.
Another work was created by having all the artists together painting on one large canvas. “Well, we weren’t all painting simultaneously. Someone would go up to the canvas and add something, and a few minutes later another artist would do something else, until we were all happy with the final result and felt it was finished,” Donazetti explained.
The most difficult collaborative effort involved “painting in the blind.” Each artist was assigned a symbol (triangle, square, circle, etc.) and told only that the painting must contain some copper or copper color on a 30-inch square canvas. The five finished pieces would be assembled into one large collaborative painting. “You have no idea what anyone else is doing, what colors they’re using,” said Donazetti, “Or whether the paintings will work together … or not.”
The 10-foot wide show banner allowed each artist a 2-foot strip of canvas on which to demonstrate his or her own personal style. When combined into a single banner it demonstrates, according to Donazetti, “the individuality yet collegiality of the painting group.”
Donazetti is nationally known for her unique, abstract woven copper paintings. A former secretary, she devoted herself full time to art a number of years ago, starting with jewelry and woven metal baskets.
She eventually settled on developing her painted copper technique and her works can now be seen in many hospitals, corporate headquarters and federal buildings. She currently resides in Raton, N.M.
Dotti Heimert is an accomplished fabric artist who in recent years has added “found object” art to her repertoire. Her mixed-media sculptures consist primarily of old metals and wood. She is the older sister of Suzanne Donazetti and resides on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.
Maggy Wagner is a Cumberland hair stylist who studied art at the University of New Mexico, receiving her B.F.A. in photography, painting and sculpture in 1991. She has had numerous one person and group shows and continues to focus on the evolution of her painting style.
Larry Imes is a life-long Cumberland native whose work is an eclectic mix of painting, drawing, clay and mixed media. His subject matter reflects personal, political and social issues.
Bob Corrigan has enjoyed the creative process since childhood, but only began to seriously explore art when he retired from federal service in 1997. He paints in watercolors and mixed media and recently added printmaking and digital printing to his agenda. Corrigan lives near Everett, Pa., but is very active in the Cumberland art scene.
The Stephanie Ann Roper Gallery has free admission and is open to the public Sunday through Wednesday from 1 to 4 p.m. For more information about the exhibition, please contact FSU Department of Visual Arts at (301) 687-4797.
FSU is committed to making all of its programs, services and activities accessible to persons with disabilities. To request accommodations through the ADA Compliance Office, call (301) 687-4102, TDD (301) 687-7955.