Delaware River by Bonnie Levinthal (watercolor)
An exhibit of paintings titled Between Two Rivers by artist and educator Bonnie Levinthal will open at the Elliott Gallery at Eckerd College on Oct. 11 and continue through Nov. 12.
The exhibit, Levinthal explains, “is an exploration and a response to the waterways in and around Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The work is both a record of my observations, color, atmosphere, weather, as well as a record of my studio practice during the pandemic.
“The paintings are in response to the local landscape but also to my exploration of new processes and materials during the pandemic and while I was on sabbatical from teaching.”
Levinthal, a Philadelphia native, is a professor of art at Pennsylvania State University–Abington College, where Eckerd College President Damián J. Fernández, Ph.D., recently served as chancellor. She has taught printmaking, drawing and commentary on art.
“My art is rooted in the exploration and representation of the landscape,” she says. “The natural world has the most significant influence on my work. I am inspired by traveling to isolated northern locations but also by my local landscape, especially during the past 18 months.”
During the week of Oct. 11, Levinthal will also join Eckerd College as a guest artist for an opening reception and conduct a Suminagashi (Japanese marbling) workshop with some visual arts students.
“Fortunately for our students, we often have guest artists on campus to do demonstrations. These sorts of encounters with working artists provide students opportunities to learn about new ways of making and thinking about art,” says David Gliem, Ph.D., chair of the Creative Arts Collegium and a professor of art history at Eckerd. “It also gives students a chance to ask questions about what it’s like to be an artist out in the real world. Our majors sometimes find it difficult to see themselves as successful artists doing what they love to do. Interacting with professionals shows them that they can do it, too, if they put in the work.”
Levinthal says she continues to learn about herself as an artist.
“I consider myself a painter of the landscape but find that I am continually redefining what that means. In the studio, my observations, and memories of the landscape—color, weather, topography, and the transportation and effects of ice and water and light—are combined with my research to create a context that exists somewhere between the real and the imagined,” she explains.
“Ambiguity as to scale and viewpoint, such as looking up at a starry sky or down at light on the water, is intentional so that there may be multiple interpretations as to the meaning of the work.”
Due to campus-access restrictions, the show is not currently open to the public. For updates, visit eckerd.edu/events.