Middletown Arts Center gearing up for spring exhibitions: What you’ll see

The latest exhibition, “Beneath The Gathering Sky” at Middletown Arts Center will feature oil paintings by artist Kevin Muente. The exhibition will be on display from Thursday through April 23 in MAC’s Main Exhibition Hall.

“Kevin Muente’s paintings feature figures in grounded natural landscapes. Visitors to the exhibition will enjoy the sense of cinematic movement his cohesive collection creates in the gallery,” said Kate Dykes, executive director at the Middletown Arts Center.

Muente is a professor of art at Northern Kentucky University.

“I try to make narrative paintings that resonate with the viewer’s imagination. The work often asks more questions than answers, that’s the key to suspense,” Muente said.

Muente will further connect with the community by taking part in an immersive art experience at the MAC. Available early in April, virtually, a conversational Artist Talk with MAC exhibit committee member and Miami University art professor Andy Au will discuss and explore Muente’s work, along with a gallery walk through.

“The MAC is incredibly proud that we exhibited 609 regional artists last year – in 2020. We are committed to providing a venue for emerging and professional artists to showcase and sell their art with opportunities to reach new audiences through not only in-person, but virtual experiences. We love connecting our community with art,” said Dykes.

Shawna Hatton’s “Reflections and Expressions: Faith, Hope, and Love,” will also be on view in MAC’s Lobby Gallery through April 1. As a mixed media artist, her collected works include drawings, photographs, and paintings.

“To process emotions and energy, especially with regards to the world around me, I turn to drawing and mixed-media painting. This body of work is representational in nature, employing a solitary figure or simple motif while relying on color, line, and texture to express emotions. It is a paradox to me that the simple shape of the heart represents something so complex. By expressing emotions using the fundamentals of art, I hope the viewer will reflect on the fundamentals of life: faith, hope, and love,” said artist Shawna Hatton.

Hatton is an instructor at Middletown Arts Center. She instructs Exploring the Art of Painting and Teen Drawing. She is the owner of Chasing Light Art Studio and Gallery in Springboro.

“Hatton shares that she is ‘drawn to light both artistically and spiritually, being especially captivated by reflections.’ Hatton’s artwork captures light beautifully. Viewers will also be drawn to the use of vibrant colors and textures in her work,” Dykes said.

Exhibits are available for viewing during MAC’s normal operating hours, which are Mondays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.; and Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Masks are required to enter the facility and strict sanitation and social distancing guidelines will be observed. The MAC exhibition season is supported by the Miriam G. Knoll Foundation. For more information, go to www.middletownartscenter.com.

Another exhibition coming to the MAC this spring will include Ohio Watercolor Society artist, Shirlee Bauer’s collected works of watercolor paintings, which will be on display in the MAC Lobby Gallery from April 1 through May 27.

On May 3 through May 13, the Miami University Regionals: Student Art Exhibition 2021 will be presented in MAC’s Main Exhibition Hall. The collective exhibition will showcase student artists and designers representing the Miami University Regional Humanities and Arts Department and will feature a variety of mediums instructed at the regional campuses including drawing, digital drawing, painting, digital painting, photography, designs, printmaking, and illustration.

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