Rider Art Gallery presents “John Heliker: The Music of Painting”

On exhibit through April 20
Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Rider University Art Gallery will present a retrospective of work by the late John Heliker, titled “The Music of Painting,” March 13 through April 20, 2014. 

The exhibit focuses on Heliker’s small painting of figures, landscapes, and still lifes, as well as material from his copious daily sketchbooks and manuscript material from his relationships with prominent American composers. Born in 1909, he played a vital role in the artistic and cultural life of New York City until his death in 2000. An important teacher of painting, Heliker taught at Columbia University for 27 years, and was among the founding faculty of the New York Studio School and the MFA program at the Parsons School of Design. 

His works are included in numerous public and private collections, including the Metropolitan Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the Walker Art Center, the Philadelphia Museum and the Whitney Museum, among many others. In Maine alone, his works are in The Farnsworth Art Museum, The Portland Museum, The Ogunquit Museum and in the museums at Bowdoin and Colby Colleges.

This exhibit was curated by Rider University Professor of Fine Arts Deborah Rosenthal.

In conjunction with the exhibit, the Heliker-LaHotan Foundation has donated 10 of John Heliker’s sketchbooks to Rider University as part of the Foundation’s Sketchbook Project.  Some are currently displayed in the University’s Moore library, and all will be available, by appointment, for study by Rider’s art students.

“This is an extraordinary gift, “ says Professor Rosenthal.  “It offers our students the opportunity to see a major artist's working process, thinking process, on our own campus--it makes teaching drawing so much more real and serious an endeavor.”

The Rider University Art Gallery is open Tuesdays through Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sundays from 12 noon to 4 p.m.  The Gallery is closed for spring break March 16-23.

Caption:  Self Portrait in Studio" ca. 1988.  Oil on linen. 20" x 24".  One of the works that is included in John Heliker “The Music of Painting” in the Rider University Art Gallery March 13 through April 20, 2014.

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Detail of "Self Portrait in Studio" ca. 1988. Oil on linen. 20" x 24".