Artworks by printmaker and former WVU Chair of Art Carmon Colangelo, along with works by University art alumni, are the new exhibits opening at the Mesaros Galleries in the Creative Arts Center beginning Thursday, Jan. 22. Both exhibits will be open though Feb. 21.

Phantasmagoriaincludes recent paintings, drawings and prints by Colangelo and will be on view in the Laura Mesaros Gallery.

Colangelo, who is now professor of art and director of the of the Lamar Dodd School of Art at the University of Georgia, also served as head of the printmaking department at WVU from 1984 1996. With 13 solo shows in the past 10 years and another 100 significant group exhibitions in the past two decades, he has exhibited widely, from Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., to Argentina, Canada, England, Puerto Rico and Korea. He is best known for his work in lithography, mixed media printmaking and works on paper. Recently, he has also been exploring digital printmaking.

As a first generation Italian Canadian living in the United States, Colangelo sees a humorous correlation between the personal nostalgia in his own work and the romantic view his parents have of their past lives in Italy. He plays up this notion by using popular historical images, personal travel photographs and television images to represent the absurd relationships and possibilities found in personal narratives and storytelling, travel and tourism, high art and popular culture, and old and new art, as well as personal and private space.

In addition to the exhibitions, Colangelo will present the 10th Deem Distinguished Artist Lecture at the WVU Creative Arts Center at 5 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 22, in the Bloch Learning and Performance Hall (Room 200A). A reception will follow at the Mesaros Galleries to officially open the exhibitions.

Opening in the Paul Mesaros Gallery the same day will be the WVU Alumni Invitational, an exhibition of works by WVU art alumni, curated by Colangelo and Robert Bridges, curator of the WVU Art Collection.

Participating artists in the Alumni Invitational are Patricia Villalobos Echeverria, a Pittsburgh artist who teaches at Indiana University of Pennsylvania; Miguel Angel Rivera, an artist living and teaching in Guanajuato, Mexico; and Houston, Texas, artist Stanley Kaminski. Kaminskis prints combine the aesthetic of Pop Art and Expressionism his work has themes of whimsy, nostalgia, and consumer culture in everyday life. His lithograph entitled Rest Stop was chosen by Lynne Allen and Phyllis McGibbon for publication in The Best of Printmaking: An International Collection by Quarry Books. Kaminski received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in from WVU in 1991, and he earned a Master of Fine Arts degree from Louisiana State University in 1994.

Managed and programmed by Curator Robert Bridges and the WVU Division of Art, the Mesaros Galleries organize a diverse and exciting schedule of exhibitions throughout the year. The galleries are committed to showing experimental work that is innovative both in terms of media and content. The Mesaros Galleries also host contemporary artists of important or growing reputation who work in all media in the Visiting Artist program. All the gallery events and receptions are free and open to the public.

The Mesaros Galleries are open Monday through Thursday from noon to 9:30 p.m., Friday from noon to 9 p.m. and Saturday from 1 to 9 p.m. They are closed Sundays and on University holidays. Special viewing times may be arranged upon request.

For more information, contact Bridges at (304) 293 2140 ext. 3210.