Life, death explored in Michigan artist’s mixed media art

Published 08.23.2021

The Gallery at Penn College

(EDITOR’S NOTE: The artist's talk referenced below, scheduled for Aug. 26, has been canceled.)

“Into the Void,” an artist’s exploration of the human figure and life and death, is the first offering of The Gallery at Penn College’s 16th season.

The solo exhibition of Michigan artist Michael Reedy’s drawings and mixed media artwork runs through Oct. 8. An artist’s talk is set for 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 26, in the gallery, located on the third floor of the Madigan Library at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

“Into the Void,” Michigan artist Michael Reedy’s exploration of the human figure and life and death, can be viewed through Oct. 8 at The Gallery at Penn College, located on the third floor of Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Madigan Library.“Into the Void” presents the history of Reedy’s work, with the show arranged in chronological order beginning with a charcoal drawing from 2005. Visitors will see his early black-and-white work followed by his more recent color creations and can view the progression from a realistic drawing style to a unique hyperrealistic/surrealistic style. All pieces feature the human figure. The recent works incorporate mixed media such as gouache, acrylic, glitter and colored pencil.

Existing within the framework of memento mori (Latin for “remember that you have to die”), the majority of Reedy’s work employs skulls and other objects that serve as reminders of death. However, these images are imbued with a degree of sarcastic self-awareness and self-pity. When combined with other elements, including alien landscapes of hypno-spirals, cascading vortexes and black holes, viewers are transported to another plane that is seriously trying to not take itself too seriously. This point of tension between hope and despair, humor and pain, and living and dying is of infinite interest to the artist.

Reedy lives in Ann Arbor and teaches drawing at Eastern Michigan University’s School of Art & Design.

His work has been included in over 200 national and international exhibitions and can be viewed in numerous private and institutional collections.

Reedy’s creations have been featured in over 30 books and journals including Hi-Fructose, Juxtapoz, Spectrum, Fresh Paint, Create Magazine, Creative Quarterly, The Moleskine Project Vol. 2 (Spoke Art), and Manifest Gallery’s 12th International Drawing Annual. Notable recent creative activities include a two-person exhibition at 111 Minna Gallery, San Francisco; and solo exhibitions at Helikon Gallery, Denver; The Scarab Club, Detroit; Arch Enemy Arts, Philadelphia; and BeinArt Gallery, Brunswick, Australia.

The Gallery at Penn College is open 2 to 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Fridays and 1 to 5 p.m. Sundays. (The gallery is closed on Saturdays.) Prior to visiting, guests should view the college’s Continuity of Operations page for current guidelines related to the pandemic.

Admission to the gallery is free and open to the public.

Serving as an educational resource for Penn College students and a cultural asset to the community, The Gallery at Penn College is dedicated to promoting art appreciation through exhibitions of contemporary art.

For more about The Gallery at Penn College, send an email or call 570-320-2445.

For more about Penn College, a national leader in applied technology education, email the Admissions Office or call toll-free at 800-367-9222.