(Medford, OR) – May 4, 2012 – This year during the Art in Bloom Festival, the Rogue Gallery & Art Center opens Eugene Bennett: A Life in Art, an exhibition featuring the art of one of the Rogue Valley’s most loved artists, an influential teacher, and a founder of the Rogue Gallery & Art Center. The exhibition presents over 70 paintings, collages, sculptures, assemblages, ceramics, and photographs created by the late artist during his long and productive career. The exhibition is a unique opportunity for community members to purchase an original Bennett as numerous works on display have never before been offered to the public. Many of these works were the artist’s favorites, on display in his home for his enjoyment.
The public is invited to attend a free RECEPTION held on Friday, May 18 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm during Third Friday in Downtown Medford. Food and wine provided by Harry & David, Rogue Creamery, and RoxyAnn Winery will be served. The exhibition is generously sponsored by Lawrence’s Jewelers and the Horton Family Foundation.
Throughout Art in Bloom, festival-goers can vote for their favorite work by Mr. Bennett. The PEOPLE’S CHOICE—the artwork that receives the most votes during the weekend—will be reproduced on postcards and mailed to every person that casts a vote.
SPECIAL WEEKEND EVENT
Mark your calendars for the reception—Friday, May 18 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm —and for the weekend long celebration of Art in Bloom. The Rogue Gallery will be open EXTENDED HOURS for this special weekend: Saturday 10am-5pm and Sunday 11am-4pm to allow everyone a chance to see the artwork, vote for their favorite, and share in the fun.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Eugene Bennett, a life long resident of the Rogue Valley, passed away on November 2, 2010. Born on December 20, 1921 in Central Point, Eugene Peart Bennett graduated from Medford High School and attended the University of Oregon before serving in the Navy. After his discharge, Bennett was accepted at The Art Institute of Chicago, where he received his Bachelors and Masters degrees. He taught at the Art Institute before moving to Europe for a year. Bennett then decided to move back to the Rogue Valley in 1958, where he taught art and, along with other area artists, founded the Rogue Gallery & Art Center in 1960. While Bennett continued to exhibit in Chicago, New York and San Francisco, he became a tireless supporter of local arts groups.
Bennett’s achievements include a solo show at the Portland Art Museum while still a student at The Art Institute of Chicago. More recently, he was the first recipient of the Arts Council of Southern Oregon’s Lifetime Achievement Award and received the Governor’s Arts Award for having “significantly contributed to the growth and development of Oregon’s cultural life.”
The exhibition Eugene Bennett: A Life in Art continues at the Rogue Gallery & Art Center through June 9. For more information on this exhibit, contact them at 541-772-8118 or visit www.roguegallery.org.
The Rogue Gallery & Art Center is the Rogue Valley’s premier non-profit community art center founded in 1960 to promote and nurture the visual arts in the Rogue Valley. The Art Center showcases emerging and established regional artists, presents fine crafts by area artisans, and offers a broad range of visual art classes and workshops for all ages.
The Rogue Gallery & Art Center is located in Medford at 40 South Bartlett Street. The hours of operation are Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. We are open every third Friday until 8:00pm.