Spring Exhibitions



November 2 - January 7, 2017

Natural Philosophy
Curated by Paul Nicholson

‌Allentown, PA – Martin Art Gallery at Muhlenberg College presents the exhibition Natural Philosophy, featuring ten artists whose work explores various approaches commonly associated with scientific inquiry. Natural Philosophy will be on view Wednesday November 2, 2016 through Saturday January 7, 2017. The exhibition will open with a public reception from 5 to 6:30pm on November 2, 2016, and will include a curator’s talk in the gallery on Wednesday November 16 at 5pm.

Empirical science is based on the idea that we can isolate “things”, measure them, and replicate the results under strict controls. Philosophy of nature was an earlier mode of inquiry that preceded modern natural sciences, and attempted to explain our physical universe based on observation. Like artists, natural philosophers’ inquiries were aimed at articulating ephemeral and invisible “things” beyond the grasp of our senses by applying deductive reasoning to qualitative observation. While any research method can be organized, natural philosophy is distinct from the modern scientific method in that it employed observation to make conclusions largely through logic.

Natural Philosophy explores ways in which artists hope to gain an understanding of natural processes by exploring the nature of truth through aesthetic, methodological and philosophical approaches more commonly associated with scientific inquiry. Recognizing the fertile overlapping of empirical truth and subjective artistic inquiry, Natural Philosophy presents a chorus of creative researchers whose personal investigations explore sex, death, and the environment. The end product is a unique body of evidence that lays bare our intimate relationship to the natural world.

The artists in Natural Philosophy interrogate our relationships and responsibilities to the natural world. They pose alternative realities and solutions, as often as they ask new questions in their creative research. Works by the artists Judy Chicago, eric fleischauer and Barbara Kendrick experiment with the practical and iconographical application of cultural-anthropological research, focusing special attention on reproduction and mate selection. Ali Kazma, Mariele Neudecker and Paul Vanouse show works that pose basic existential questions in the anthropocentric framework. Works by Andrea Hornick, David Mann, Alberto Rey and Julie Tremblay consider our interconnectedness to our physical and biological world.

Artist and writer Eugène Fromentin believed that “art is the expression of the invisible by means of the visible.” Artists measure, observe and isolate “things” in pursuit of new knowledge. The artists’ studio is in fact a laboratory where they complete experiments through creative research; the end product is presented as creative work. Art employs a host of methodologies inspired by emotional, intellectual and purely imaginary influences. If there is any realm of discourse that artists dominate, it is likely that of the subjective. If empirical science seeks to identify demonstrable facts, artists, much like yesterdays’ natural philosophers, are perhaps in search for something even greater than fact, they seek truth.

About the Curator: Paul Nicholson is the Director of Martin Art Gallery at Muhlenberg College.


AM DeBrincat: Speculative Fiction

Mixed Media Paintings by Brooklyn Based artist, publisher and curator AM DeBrincat January 30 - March 27, 2017, Public Reception February 8, 5 - 6:30pm; Public Artist Talk February 22, 5:00 pm.


Mixed Media Paintings by Brooklyn Based artist, publisher and curator AM DeBrincat January 30 - March 27, 2017, Public Reception February 8, 5 - 6:30pm; Public Artist Talk February 22, 5:00 pm.

AM DeBrincat is a Brooklyn-based multidisciplinary artist whose work explores the hybrid nature of identity in the digital age. DeBrincat’s work has been included in group exhibitions throughout the US and internationally, and in solo exhibitions in the US. Recent residencies and grants include residencies at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA), The Wassaic Project, and Chashama, and grants from the Durst Foundation and the Deming Foundation.

Originally from San Francisco, California, DeBrincat received a BA in Spanish and English Literature from the University of Oregon, and received an MFA from Parsons the New School for Design.


Patricia Satterlee: Already Gone

New works by Patricia Saterlee, January 30 - May 26, 2017, Public Reception February 8, 5 - 6:30pm, Public Artist Talk March 1, 5:00 pm.

Patricia Satterlee's work explores the balance between abstraction and representation, symmetry and irregularity. Her paintings are highly layered compositions, with each layer weaving together observation of physical objects and a sense of the energy within and around the objects. The flashe paint she uses produces a flat matte surface where colors collide between fluidity and solidness. In her drawings and collages, Satterlee focuses more on the tension within the boundaries surrounding physicality and energy fields.

Satterlee's studio is in Brooklyn, New York. She has shown at The Kitchen, Frosch&Portman, Valentine Gallery, M55 Gallery, and Norte Maar in New York; the Matewaan Gallery in Beacon, NY; the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Washington Project for the Arts (WPA) in Washington, DC; and Salon Zucher in Paris.

Satterlee did undergraduate studies at Carnegie-Mellon University and University of California. She holds an MFA from American University.

George Afedzi Hughes in the Martin Art Gallery

New works by George Afedzi Hughes, February 8 - March 11, 2017, Public Reception February 8, 5 - 6:30pm

George Afedzi Hughes' work uses the history of colonialism as a basis to highlight parallels between that violent history and contemporary global conflicts. In today’s informational age global occurrences of violence reach us through the media: transmitting fear that increasingly replaces sensations of calm. Hughes' work interprets in visual form the spectacle of information, knowledge and subjectivity. Furthermore, he investigates postcolonial reconciliation through competitive sports imagery, popular culture and narratives of multicultural societies.

Originally from Ghana, George Afedzi Hughes studied painting at The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, College of Art, where he earned a BA in Art (Painting and Drawing1989) and an MA in Art Education (1991). He moved to England in 1991 and finally settled in the United States in 1994 after a major solo exhibition of his works created in London were exhibited in Accra, Ghana at The Artists Alliance Gallery. He later received an MFA in Painting and Drawing (2001) from Bowling Green State University.

Since moving to The United States, he has taught Art at The University of Toledo (1997-2001), Bowling Green State University (1999-2000), The University of Oklahoma (2001-2006) and currently at SUNY at Buffalo (2006-present). His paintings, performances, and installations have been shown internationally in Germany, Portugal, England, Holland, China, Denmark, France, Nigeria, South Africa, and in Ghana.

‌ Joseph E.B. Elliott  Monument and Ephemera

Image: Sacristy, Church of the Advocate, Philadelphia, PA, 2015

Martin Art Gallery at Muhlenberg College presents Monument and Ephemera, by Joseph E.B. Elliott. Elliott’s exhibition will feature a sampling of works from the past three decades. It will include photographs made during surveys of industrial sites from 1980’s to recent works from his forthcoming book exploring Philadelphia’s cultural sites. Monument and Ephemera will be on view March 15 through April 22, 2017. Martin Art Gallery will host a public reception Wednesday, March 15 from 5 to 6:30pm, and a public talk with the artist Wednesday, March 22, 5:00 – 6:30pm in The Recital Hall at Baker Center for the Arts.

Joseph E.B. Elliott’s photographic practice focuses on the idiosyncrasies of industrial, historic and religious sites. His lens captures architectural grandeur within expansive interior and exterior vistas, while being sure to include details that speak to cultural micro-ecologies. Bits of evidence left behind suggest how spaces are used, and allude to our human need to customize even thoroughly designed environments. His photos impart an otherworldly sensibility, as dramatic light and at times ethereal atmospheric effects abound. However, this abruptly collides with the banality of the everyday as lunchboxes, graffiti and other personal effects reveal themselves upon closer inspection.

Elliott is a sort of cultural geographer; he records the lingering narratives that our built-spaces retain. Largely absent of protagonists, the scant evidence of human activity [a half-filled bottle of water, a well used time clock, tools left at the end of the day] captures pieces of lived culture, often in industries at risk of erasure. Elliott says his work “resides at the nexus of documentation and art. Documentation implies a detached, non-judgmental process in which information is objectively recorded, analyzed, cataloged and communicated. For many, art implies sentiment, romance, interpretation. In my experience art and documentation are not mutually exclusive, lying instead along a continuum.”

Joseph E.B. Elliott is Professor of Art at Muhlenberg College, Allentown, Pennsylvania, and an Adjunct Instructor in the School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania. Elliott specializes in photography of historic industrial and architectural sites. Over the past twenty-five years he has received numerous commissions from the National Park Service, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, University of Pennsylvania, and many private clients. His work is in the collections of the Athenaeum of Philadelphia, the Library of Congress, and several museums and universities. His photographs have been published in Common Ground, Smithsonian, Wired, and Metropolis, as well his books, The Steel and Palazzos of Power.

Contemporary art Myanmar for the month of April in the Galleria
Ian Holiday, organizer for Contemporary art Myanmar give a public talk on this exhibition and on contemporary politics in Myanmar [Burma] at Muhlenberg College campus April 12, 5 – 6:30pm

MAG on the road @ Gallery Petite, Brooklyn NY: 4.07 – 4.15:
Muhlenberg Seniors will show a preview of their thesis works in Brooklyn's Petite Gallery, located in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn; Reception 4.07 6 – 8 pm. Reception to coincide with a Berg alumni mixer, nearby, organized by alumni affairs.

May 3 - May 21, 2017 Thesis Exhibition in the Martin Art Gallery, Featuring works by graduating seniors in the Department of Art.
Opening Reception, Wednesday May 3rd , 5 – 6:30pm

Past Exhibitions

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