CHARLESTON, SC.- The Corrigan Gallery presents today #147;Celebration, a show of works by Richard Hagerty opening May 15, 2008 with a reception from 5pm to 8:00pm at 62 Queen Street, Charleston. The work will hang through June 15. This special show is also the Piccolo Spoleto Invitational show observing Hagertys status as the commissioned official poster artist for the 30th Piccolo Spoleto Festival.
Surgeon Richard (Duke) Hagerty began painting before medical school honed his eye and hand coordination. He is a self taught artist who draws his surreal, fantasy based imagery from dreams, mythology, history, science, and stories. Painting, he believes, is the language of the unconscious; the act of painting itself is as close as we get to dreaming in the conscious state. He works in a variety of media, including pen and ink, watercolor and oil. He has been a working artist for thirty years. This former Charleston City Councilman is widely acclaimed for his fantasy paintings in which he utilizes free association to craft psychologically potent dreamscapes. His work recalls that of Dali, Bosch, Brueghel, Kandinsky, Miro, Klee and Chagall. The symbolic art movement preceding World War II and the influence of the iconographic mark making of the Latin American and Asian cultures is evident in his work.
Often works are based on the artist's personal myth experiences and their connection to the collective unconscious. His works captured the viewers attention with movement, color and a complex story tantalizes far beyond a simple viewing of the work. Whether figurative or geometric, the work is familiar yet not. It carries the audience on a journey beyond time and place to an arena where all is possible and fantastical scenarios can play out. References are many; stories behind the imagery often remain untold; and the complexity of the repetition of images over the 30 years of painting remains to be unraveled.
Hagerty was the 2007 Piccolo Spoleto Childrens Festival Poster Artist with his painting Dream Children. He was also selected as the Piccolo Spoleto poster artist, in 1984 and 1990 and was the 2003 Piccolo Spoleto Invitational Exhibition artist. His paintings have appeared in numerous solo and group exhibitions since 1979 throughout the southeastern region and in New York. His work is in the collection of the Gibbes Museum of Art. He had a solo show at the Gibbes Art Gallery (now Museum of Art) in 1991. The Tippy Stern Fine Art gallery exhibition entitled Paintings in May 2001 featured works by Richard Hagerty along with two other artists.