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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

    Landscape art exhibition opens in McComas gallery

    Landscape changes in the blink of an eye, or at least that’s what Mississippi landscape painter George Thurmond is trying to show.
    Thurmond’s exhibition, now on display in McComas Hall, features more than 50 paintings on the same location of his property.
    The opening reception to Thurmond’s “Colour Studies: Light Keys from the Landscape,” exhibit will be Thursday from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Each painting shows the landscape at a specific time of the day at a certain time in the year. By painting the same view, he shows how the landscape changes.
    Thurmond planted flowers and trees on the property so that he could use the landscape as subjects for painting, an artist tradition. Artists throughout history, including French Impressionist Claude Monet, have created gardens to serve as subjects for their artwork.
    “We jokingly call Thurmond the redneck Monet,” gallery director Bill Andrews said.
    He used a painting technique known as plein-air to create the pieces. “Plein-air” means “in the open air” in French. It is basically the painting of outdoor landscapes.
    With the plein-air technique, outdoor scenes are painted in natural light, exactly how they appear.
    Thurmond will demonstrate the plein-air technique to art students in a four-day demonstration.
    “A lot of people consider it some of the most important work in the state,” Andrews said.
    Charlene Eiffert, an interior design major and a student in the gallery management class, said that Thurmond’s work is a good example of the plein-air technique.
    Andrews said Thurmond’s work is important to the state.
    “He has really mastered his method of painting,” Eiffert said. “People of our generation do not really have many interesting landscapes, but he does.”
    Andrews said that this exhibition is the only chance for the public to see many of these pieces.
    “We are really pleased to have the opportunity for this show,” he said. “It consists mostly of stuff from a private collection, and it won’t be seen again.”
    A gallery management class that Andrews teaches in the Art Department set up the exhibition in McComas.
    Students in the class learn techniques to successfully run a gallery.
    Mishael Simpson is a student in Andrews’s class. He said that the exhibition teaches students how a gallery works.
    “We learn many things like how types of pieces determine how they are placed and how to make an exhibit visually interesting,” he said.
    Eiffert, who is in the class, was helping get the exhibition ready on Saturday and is excited about Thurmond’s work being on campus.
    “I think that it is an excellent opportunity for students to see an artist’s full series,” she said.
    A slide lecture in conjunction with the exhibition will be held Oct. 28 at 12:45 p.m. in the Bettersworth Auditorium in Giles Hall. The lecture, titled “The Hawthorne/Hensche School: A Brief Overview of Its History and Principles” is open to the public.
    There will also be a gallery discussion open to the public Oct. 28 at 5:30 p.m. in the gallery in McComas Hall.
    Andrews said that he hopes more students will be involved in the exhibition.
    “The gallery is here to serve the faculty and students as well as to get the community in to see exhibits,” he said.

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    Landscape art exhibition opens in McComas gallery