Remembrances: The Art of Joseph McCullough at Artists Archives of the Western Reserve

AAWR ‘s 2013 exhibition schedule opens with Remembrances: The Art of Joseph McCullough. This exhibition will  explore the artist’s oeuvre from the late 1950s to the present.

McCullough is President Emeritus of the Cleveland Institute of Art from which he graduated and later served as head for  34 years. He is also a two-time recipient of the coveted Cleveland Arts Prize, first in 1970 for his outstanding painting,  and then again in 1988 for his leadership and international expansion of the CIA.

McCullough’s personal and artistic lives are deeply intertwined. He served as a bomber pilot in WWII, a perilous  experience imprinting indelible memories of the earth seen through veils of clouds, smoke, fire, and black flak. Later, he  became interested in outdoor activities that would bring him close to nature, like birding and fly fishing.

His mature painting is very much informed by those life experiences. He is essentially a landscape and “soundscape”  painter, seeking the purified memory of the sights and sounds of nature, the abstract “remembrance” rather than the  detailed literal image of the scene. Stylistically, he might belong to the Modernist school of Abstract Expressionism, but the real “art” in these paintings is uniquely his own.