Few professors get to see, years later, how their students turned out. Adolph Rosenblatt is fortunate: in a few days two different exhibitions of work by his former students will be up at the same time. In fact one is already up, at UWM's Inova Arts Center Gallery: Adolph Rosenblatt and three of his students.
Hundreds of other students, 33 years worth, aren't in the UWM show, and I wondered what they're doing. Many keep in touch with Adolph, including me (I married him). So about a month ago I had an idea for a show in Rosenblatt Gallery: ROSENBLATT'S FORMER STUDENTS, with two artworks by each artist. For the next several days I asked the former students we heard from or ran into if they'd like to participate, and soon we had about twenty artists. This second show will open on Gallery Night, October 15, and will overlap for a while with the UWM show, which closes November 6.
We have an exciting array of artists: Michael Davidson, Virgi Driscoll, Mike Fredrickson, Lee Ann Garrison, Karen Brittain, Tom Brittain, Josie Osborne, Allison B. Cooke, Deidre Prosen, Steve Crossot, Mark Berson, Ken Kaczmarzyk, Henry Klimowicz, Wendy Cooper, Mara Manning, Nancy Lamers, Joe Boblick, Evelyn Patricia Terry, Xav Leplae, Kevin Callahan, Dean Nimmer, Judith Reidy, Vicki Samolyk, Patter Hellstrom, and Sarah, Eli, Joshua, Pauline, and Suzanne Rosenblatt (I was Adolph's first student!).
ROSENBLATT'S FORMER STUDENTS, Oct 15 to Nov 30, 2010
Opening Reception: Friday, Oct 15, 6:30-10:30 PM.
ROSENBLATT GALLERY, 181 N. Broadway, Milwaukee
Painting and statement by Wendy Cooper: Adolph Rosenblatt was my major professor in painting and drawing at the University of Wisconsin which I attended from 1987-1991. I received my Masters of Fine Art there in 1991. He was an important influence in that he helped me to be immediate with paint, just as he was with his paint and clay. "Put the paint on the canvas." "Trust yourself!" I had a keen interest in the outdoor environment, and would bike to Lake Park and Atwater Beach to paint and draw.
To be right there taking in the view! I really wanted to paint snow. I loved how trees appeared when covered in a thick layer surrounded by immense, falling snowflakes. I was reminded of Japanese folding screens which depicted trees in winter. Adolph enhanced my understanding of Asian art with its sense of control yet something so immediate.
Adolph also inspired me to paint on large canvases and paper. He also introduced me to new materials I might consider working with as well. Adolph taught me to "see", to notice how the change of a single brush stroke could make a painting complete.
Since graduating, I have remained in contact Adolph and his family. I continue to value his way of "seeing", the immediacy of his painting and sculpting, and most of all, his ability to create as he lives.
Evelyn Patricia Terry: Adolph was a wonderful spirit. The joy that he had teaching was obvious. He helped me to trust him as a professor. I did not always feel comfortable with my other instructors. He gleefully, but seriously, instructed our class to do gesture drawings with the "classroom students as models" walking around the room. We drew "wrinkles only in fabric and skin" to define the body without the actual body being drawn. We drew negative space to define positive objects. We drew couples sitting together on the sofa. But most of all, specific to my situation in his claww, was an incident about the time that I was taking his drawing class at UW - Milwaukee and another drawing class at MATC during the same semester. I just wanted to hurry up and become an artist. I was excited to show him my drawings that I had carefully rendered in the other class. He looked at them and said that I would flunk his class if I continued to take drawing classes at MATC. He looked very serious, but laughed, I think. I was shocked and really loved his class and wanted to earn my degree from UW-Milwaukee. I dropped my MATC class immediately. Because of lack of experience, I had no idea why but now I know that those drawings had a completely different energy. They lacked spontaneity. They were very static - kind of like "Dick" and "Jane." I never developed one style over my 40 + art career and I am definitely spontaneous as I move from media to media and allow the media to aid in expressing my message.
BELOW: Floral Rhythm #2 by Virgi Driscoll