During Daniel Burke's recent Reclaimed show at the Crary Art Gallery, he passed on some of his expertise to young people.
Students in grades three through five at Sugar Grove Elementary School met Burke, looked at his works, and generally explored the gallery.
Burke, a professor of art and the chair of the art department at Mercyhurst College, talked with students about his inspirations in nature, and some of the steps he goes through in preparation for a show.
Sugar Grove Elementary School fifth-graders (from left) Aubrey Younger, Morgan Saunders, and Michelle Kingsley look over work by artist Daniel Burke at the Crary Art Gallery in Warren.
Many of Burke's works feature birds. Some of the small, wooden birds are painted to reflect birds in real life. Others are painted more fancifully. Many end up looking like dominos, Burke said.
Along with his natural themes, Burke focused the show on recycling and repurposing materials in the works. As an example, he explained that he frequently cuts his birds out of old paint palettes.
Burke showed the groups a model he built of the inside of the Crary Gallery. The model, he explained, helped him decide where each exhibit would be most appropriately placed.
Each student who visited the gallery was allowed to choose a Burke-original bird to take home.
Groups of students rotated through several stations. While some spent time listening to and asking questions of Burke, others were viewing the works on display. The other groups were touring the grounds and looking over the permanent exhibits.
Busing for the event was provided by the gallery
"The Crary Art Gallery board members strives to promote the fine arts and bring noteworthy art and cultural issues to the region," art teacher Jessica Shoemaker, who is also a member of the Crary board, said.