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October 2, 2012
Studio shot of Don Gray's “Four Stones (Higher Ground)."
LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) – The Nightingale Gallery at Eastern Oregon University presents “Stone,” a solo exhibition of work by EOU alumnus and area artist Don Gray.
An opening reception will be held from 6-8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5 in the gallery located in Loso Hall. The show continues through Oct. 26. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.
The exhibition coincides with the unveiling of Gray’s recently completed mural for EOU’s Inlow Hall. The mural presents portraits of 36 individuals, who as students, faculty or administrators, have made their mark on the university’s 83-year history.
The official unveiling of the mural will take place at 1 p.m. Friday, Oct. 12 in the Welcome Center on the first floor of Inlow.
Gray’s “Stone” exhibit is a collection of works in both painting and drawing. His depictions of rocks and sky can be seen as metaphors of a larger reality beyond what is observed.
“Indigenous peoples around the world think of the entire earth as a living organism, and modern science increasingly corroborates that intuitive notion,” Gray explains. “It occurred to me that the only reason we think of a rock as inanimate is because its lifespan is unimaginably longer than our own. I sensed the life in these stones as metaphors of the living earth.”
Gray’s exhibit also investigates the extraordinary in the ordinary. The multi-panel works make it necessary for the viewer to experience the pieces incrementally and cumulatively, building an intrinsic sense of time. The images are at once both vibrant and quiet; they straddle the line between representation and abstraction, and search for meaning in the most basic elements of the natural world.
Gray grew up in rural Oregon and started drawing and painting at a young age. He received his bachelor’s degree from EOU in 1970 and has painted large murals all over the U.S., illustrated books, taught workshops, won numerous awards and exhibited in many galleries and museums.
In 2007 Gray began an online journal, www.dailyartwest.com, where he posts small paintings and commentary. His work is included in the permanent collections of the State of Oregon, Hallie Ford Museum, University of Washington Medical Center, Frye Art Museum, Grande Ronde Regional Medical Clinic, and numerous other public and private collections.
For more information visit www.eou.edu/art/nightingale-gallery or connect with the gallery on Facebook.
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