AMHERST, MASS.- The Mead Art Museum
at Amherst College celebrates the memory of Michael Mazur with Perspectives on Michael Mazur, a new career-spanning exhibition of his work. Mazur, one of the most distinguished artists to graduate from Amherst, would have marked his 60th reunion year this spring.
The exhibition draws on the Mead's extensive holdings of Mazur's work, as well as generous loans from classmates, H. Axel Schupf and Jane and Bob Keiter, Class of 1957. Many of the objects in Perspectives on Michael Mazur have never before been shown in public, including his senior thesis An Image of Salome. The exhibition also includes examples of his vibrant pastels, large-scale gestural paintings and well-known prints, such as those that Mazur created for The Inferno of Dante: A New Verse Translation by Robert Pinsky, a former U.S. poet laureate.
"The biggest challenge with this show was whittling down the list of wonderful Mazur works to include in the exhibition," said Vanja Malloy, curator of American art at the Mead, who organized the exhibition. "Mazur had an impressive range to his oeuvre and the Mead is very fortunate to have such a strong collection of his work."
Mazur often depicted nature in his art during a 50-year career as an artist, and his late paintings in particular demonstrate a lush, fluid painting technique that is reminiscent of Abstract Expressionism. As a printmaker, Mazur demonstrated exceptional command of wide-ranging techniques, including aquatint, lithography, and monotype.
He was also a teacher and arts advocate who taught at the Rhode Island School of Design, Brandeis University and Harvard University. He was active on the boards of Boston's Artist Foundation, the Council for the Arts and Humanities and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Mazur returned to Amherst College in 2004 as a Robert Frost Fellow to work in the printmaking studio. During his fellowship, students interacted, observed and assisted him with his prints.
"This exhibition celebrates an immensely talented painter and printmaker, who not only impacted the art world through his work and teaching, but also made a lasting impact on those he knew at Amherst College," Malloy said.