“Tenses,” a solo exhibition of oil paintings and drawings by Walter Hatke, the
Walter C. & May I. Baker Professor of Visual Arts, is on view at the Mandeville Gallery through May 17.
An opening reception will be held Thursday, April 9, 5-6:30 p.m.
Marking Hatke’s retirement after more than 20 years at the College, this exhibition touches on artistic developments over a span of a quarter century.
“It is not a retrospective in the usual sense of the word,” Hatke notes, “because most of the work was completed in the last three years, and I continue to produce art, sometimes reconfiguring earlier compositions.”
Hatke uses traditional artist materials that have been employed for centuries, including oil paint applied to Belgian linen and stretched on wood frames, and charcoal, graphite or watercolor applied to heavy paper.
Combining these materials with the compositional elements of form, light, space and perspective, he creates recognizable subjects from everyday life, including photorealistic paintings of buildings and interiors.
He often seeks out unexpected angles, and many of his paintings merge several different perspectives. He draws from the descriptive tradition of Dutch painting. His stated intention is to let viewers bring their own experiences and perceptions to the image and come away with their own interpretations.
Hatke holds a B.A. from DePauw University and advanced art degrees from the University of Iowa. Early in his career, he was a first apprentice and painting assistant to Jack Beal, a leader of the New York Realists movement, and an assistant to the sculptor Alexander Calder.
His works are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Smith College Museum of Art, Chase Manhattan Bank, Exxon Corporation and Seven Bridges Foundation in Greenwich, Conn. Awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and Vermont Studio Center, and an Ingram Merrill Foundation Grant for Painting.
He has been a member of the Union faculty since 1986.