SMC Museum of Art

Currently On Display: Dale Chihuly: Venetians, Michael Collopy Portraits & Contemporary art by Pamela Blotner and Sam Perry.

13 Jul

Michael Collopy: Face to Face with Movers and Shakers

Time is running out to see photographer Michael Collopy’s amazing works! An 82’ SMC graduate, Collopy has quite an inspiring and comprehensive portfolio of portraits. Of his many accomplishments, he formed the Architects of Peace Foundation in 2008 to emphasize and support peace education. He has also photographed over 75 world peacemakers in his Architects of Peace, and through his Works of Love are Works of Peace, chronicles his 15-year friendship with Mother Teresa.

Perhaps what will leave you most awe-struck at his exhibition here at SMCMoA, is the variety of individuals he has captured of all walks of life and of different reputations. In addition to a few of his peacemakers (including Mother Teresa), you will also see a few athletes (Michael Phelps), musicians (Bono) and one or two brought to the limelight by our media culture (Kim Kardashian). There are many more to see in this great variety of Michael Collopy works so be sure to stop by before they’re gone!

"Michael Collopy: Face to Face with Movers and Shakers" will close on July 20th. Admission is $5 and the museum hours are Wed-Sun, 11:00-4:30. 

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10 Jul

Dale Chihuly: Venetians

If you haven’t come by already, check out the blown glass show we have here at the Museum! It’s an absolutely astounding show that has attracted visitors from across the country to come and see it. From vases large enough to fit a small child to delicate figures no bigger than a fist, this show truly exemplifies the ways to distort and create beauty and a little bit of danger from glass. Chihuly is an artist who has been renowned for his work and this show is no exception. His dragons and Italian putti are so intricate and so lifelike it makes one wonder: how does Chihuly breathe life into this glass? Don’t worry, we have a video that will explain it all!

Museum hours are Wed-Sun, 11:00-4:30. Admission in $5, but free for students, alumni, members, and military veterans!

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19 Mar

From Swords to Plowshares

Come on by the Saint Mary’s College Museum of Art! Our latest exhibits include WWI trench art, Songs of the Patriot which is a compilation of original music covers from WWI, and the Heritage Edition of the Saint John’s Bible from St. John’s Abbey.  These installations show our world’s deep history through an innovative lens whether its through artillery shells made into lamps, or hand-painted scenes from the Bible on vellum.  WWI art is on display until April 13th and our illuminated bible is here until April 6th!

Come on by the museum Wednesday- Sunday from 11:00- 4:30.

P.S. We also have a bunch of new merchandise in our store at great prices! Great for gift giving, as well as a little treat for yourself.

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05 Dec

The Artist Revealed: Artist Portraits and Self-Portariats

In our current exhibit, The Artist Revealed: Artist Portraits and Self-Portariats, there is a multitude of artist depictions. From cartoons to photographs to still lifes, the many portraits all depict the artists in a different way. For example, Aaron Bohrad’s Red Cabbage depicts an extremely detailed still life full of vibrant cabbage and beets; the artist is only seen in the tiny reflection emanating from a translucent vase. Similarly, Dieter Roth’s Picture of a Self Portrait captures the silhouette of the artist using a compilation of textures such as acrylic paint, glue, and even paint tubes.Both vividly colorful pieces capture the meaning of a self-portrait in untraditional ways. Come visit the museum and see these and many other portraits! But hurry, the exhibit closes on December 15!

26 Sep

Judy Dater: Artist Biography and Upcoming Exhibit

We are excitedly at work on our upcoming exhibition Judy Dater: Edo Redux, whichwill be showcasing the artist’s immense flare for portraiture, focusing on her travel in Japan. Originally attending art school for drawing, Dater found photography her senior year of college and fell in love with the medium. Dater is celebrated for her exploration of just how far one can push beyond the societal norm. Her focus on the female nude transformed the taboo image into an expression of liberation from the accepted ideals of women and beauty. The exhibition will run from October 20th to December 15th. 

08 Sep

Back to School!

With our first week of classes done, we know you are looking for a study break to escape that big mountain of homework! The Saint Mary’s Museum of Art is officially open for visitors- new and returners! Our current installations are Afterglow: Rethinking California Light and Space Art- a moving, modern, multimedia exhibition, Surfaces: Lee Saloutos- Transformative Photography from Nevada and the Great Basin- which captures the desert’s red crumbling debris left by human activity, and Points of View: Landscapes by Mary Lou Correia and Paul Kratter depicting vibrant nature scenes of all times of life.

These exhibits will only be up until September 29th- so stop on by and see these wonderful works of art!

The Museum is open Wednesday- Sunday from 11am- 4:30pm

28 Aug

Hello all and happy last days of summer!

The first day of class is less than a week away and we, here in the museum, are getting ready to welcome all of you back home! The gift shop has been restocked with new goodies and the new show is waiting for you to come and explore!  We hope that you can make it in on Wednesday the 4th to see the new pieces that we have brought into our galleries.

As a reminder, the museum is open Wed-Sunday from 11:00-4:30.  

We are so excited you are coming back and look forward to seeing you roaming the galleries!

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18 Aug

Check out some of the tunes that we have been listening to today in the museum!

(Source: Spotify)

18 Aug

Upcoming Exhibitions

Hello everyone!
The beginning of the school year is fast approaching, but don’t worry,  the museum is ready to welcome all of you Gaels back home! We sure have missed you!!  We have a lot of awesome things planned for this year and in case you haven’t been to the museum in a while and haven’t been able to check out our Upcoming Exhibitions schedule, we thought we should give you a bit of insight into what is to come in the museum this year! We hope to see you all very soon!

                                                   Upcoming Exhibitions

August - September 2013

Afterglow: Rethinking California Light and Space Art

An eye-opening exhibition that springs from California’s metaphysical brand of minimalism developed in the ’60s and ’70s and shows how this unique form lives on in current West Coast artists such as Helen Lundeberg, Thomas Akawie, Michael Damm, Gina Borg and Michele Blade. The artists use optical effects in exciting ways to create a shift “from the object to the experience.”

Surfaces: Lee Saloutos - Transformative Photography from Nevada and the Great Basin

Award-winning photographer, Lee Saloutos, has spent over three decades depicting the abstracted beauty of weathered surfaces found in humanity’s desert debris. In Surfaces, Saloutos captures vividly colored, haunting and memorable images of discarded vehicles and equipment as they oxidize and crumble, drawing out the complexity of the object hidden beneath he surface.

October - December 2013

The Artist Revealed: Artist Portraits and Self-Portraits

An artist’s portrait, like all good portraits, offers the viewer more than physical features.  One sees the characteristics of the sitter that make that person a unique individual.  All artists are involved with, or have a heightened interest in, creative pursuits which makes them interesting candidates for portrait subjects.  While traditional, commissioned portraits often came with expectations that the image be a favorable likeness of the sitter, this exhibition illustrates that self-portraits are an artist’s opportunity to make a statement. 

Judy Dater: Edo Redux

Judy Dater was drawn to portraiture early in her career and has continued to explore the power of photographic portrayals.  Dater says: “People tend to reveal themselves to the camera and express something about themselves, perhaps even something hidden from themselves.”  This exhibition spotlights her travels to Japan and focuses primarily on portraits.  Curated by the artist, she pairs her contemporary photoraphs with work she did in the early ’60s offering intriguing insights to the cultural changes that have occurred in the last 50 years. 

Malcolm Lubliner: The Automotive Landscape

As Lubliner writes, “I’ve photographed the urban landscape for manny years focusing on two related visual stories: those places where nature and modern humans merge and where that merger is amplified by the appearance of automobiles.  Cars in the landscape strike me as comical.  They seem almost like alien creatures, mechanical clowns dressed in an array of costumes.  They have their own world and talk to each other in parking lots but never quite relate to the arena in which they perform or tot he humans who inhabit them.”

February -  April 2014

From Swords to Plowshares: Metal Trench Art from World War I & World War II

The metal trench art objects in this exhibition are as varied and unique as the military and civilian artists who created them.  The works date from the origins of this brass art form in the trenches of France during the first World War, to post World War II pieces. Makers of trench art utilized artillery shells, bullets, shrapnel, aircraft parts, currency and other miscellaneous metal scrap and applied materials. 

Tattoos: Bodies of Art

Bodies of Art will explore the cultural and artistic significance of tattoos and how they have evolved from marks of inferiority to being part of popular culture.  Artists and bodies from the Bay Area will be the focus of the exhibition. 

The Saint John’s Bible

The Saint John’s Bible is a work of art and a work of theology.  In commissioning a handwritten, illuminated BIble, Saint John’s revives a tradition that has been nearly absent from the Christian world since the invention of the printing press in the fifteenth century.  Here a team of artists have brought together the ancient techniques of calligraphy and illumination to create a 21st Century Bible with an ecumenical Christian approach rooted in Benedictine spirituality.  The result is a living document and a monumental achievement. 

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14 Aug

Inside Afterglow: Chris Fraser

Our current show, Afterglow: Rethinking California Light and Space Art, features a diverse array of pieces and mediums, which coalesce to illustrate the journey of Light and Space art by the current generation of Light and Space artists. The artists of the Light and Space movement are not focused so much on the final product but more so the act of viewing the art and the stimulation of awareness; the artists of Afterglow challenge the limits of visual perception.

One such artist, whose work is featured in the exhibition, is Chris Frazer who didn’t learn about the Light and Space movement until graduate school, according to curator Melissa Feldman.  In an interview with, Fraser states “I work with light across various media–installation, performance, photography, and video.  Even though I work with light, it is not my subject. I see light as an agent of connection. Vision alone is beautiful, but so is the way that it draws us into the world. Light bridges distances and allows us to know things outside of our immediate grasp.”  In true Light and Space form, Fraser is more focused on the awareness of self and something beyond and is thus forcing viewers to reflect on the act of viewing the art and letting it take them somewhere beyond their “grasp.”  It is quite evident from his piece, One Line Drawing the View From My Studio Window, that Fraser’s mastery allows him to create spectacular images by controlling and bending light, that are simple and beautiful. Fraser also states in his interview, “Using the camera obscura as a point of departure, I pursue an experience of light that engages the unseen in everyday phenomena.  I craft spaces that frame ambient light, revealing a glimpse of the complex order around us. The camera is not a device, but a situation. Wherever light slips into dark, a picture will be seen. These specters fill the air around us. We walk into them, wear them, change them.”

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