Delaware News


The Mezzanine Gallery to Exhibit “Characters” by Gail Husch

Delaware Division of the Arts | Department of State | Featured Video | Kent County | New Castle County | News | Sussex County | Date Posted: Thursday, April 28, 2022


On the Mezzanine: May 2022 Artist Exhibition by Gail Husch

On view from May 6-30, 2022

Wilmington, Del. (April 28, 2022) – The Delaware Division of the Arts’ Mezzanine Gallery presents artist Gail Husch’s exhibition, Characters, running May 6 through 30, 2022. Her exhibit will also be part of Art Loop Wilmington — the monthly self-guided tour of art in and around the city. Guests are invited to attend a Meet-the-Artist Reception to be held Friday, May 6, from 5:00-7:00 p.m. 

A sculptor of whimsical figures and forms, Husch has been named a 2022 DDOA Emerging Artist Fellow in the Visual Arts discipline of Crafts.

After growing up in New Hampshire, Husch attended the University of South Florida, earning a BA in Art Education. She then moved on to Amherst College in Massachusetts for a Masters in Art History. In 1984, she and her husband made the trek to Delaware, where she pursued a PhD in Art History at the University of Delaware. She’s been a “Delawarean” ever since. Husch also taught art history at Goucher College near Baltimore from 1989 until her retirement in 2017.

Her imaginative creations are primarily small clay people who, as Husch describes, “…teeter on the edge of the ridiculous without losing their humanity.” Her figures are heavily inspired by literature and history, and by people she encounters or finds in pictures.

“…a smorgasbord of body shapes and movements, facial structures, and expressions,” Husch says. “I find characters from literature (especially Charles Dickens) and earlier historical periods especially compelling.”

Her love of this distinctive medium came one day over 40 years ago in a ceramics course that emphasized abstract vessels and forms. “I played with a lump of clay that turned into the crude figure of a woman in a bustled dress,” she recalls. “I was exhilarated by the transformation of malleable earth into a creature with its own expressive life.”

In her work, she favors such subjects that invite exaggeration in expression and pose. She’s drawn to the foolish and the extreme, and to characters who remind us that we might not see ourselves as others do.

“I gain immense satisfaction when I manage to achieve the right expression on a figure’s face, the right attitude of its body. It might take five, ten or twenty tries before the curl of a mouth, the flare of a nostril, or the tilt of a torso conveys something I intended. Each piece is the result of an immersive process of discovery.”

This exhibit not only features her small ceramic figures of literary and historical subjects, but also selections from a 32-piece chess set — a king, a queen, a bishop, a knight, two rooks, and two pawns — which she created in 2019. All the sculptures are stoneware; those in white clay have a black underglaze; acrylic paint adds color to the red and white clay figures.

The chess pieces are of particular curiosity; does she enjoy a good game of chess, we asked?

“I am not, in fact, a chess player, but the range in a set offered a rich field for exploration,” Husch says. “I tried to put into each piece some aspect of humanity, with a twist of humorous exaggeration — arrogant kings, condescending queens, belligerent knights, desiccated bishops, monstrous rooks, supplicating pawns.”

The Mezzanine Gallery, open weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., is located on the second floor of the Carvel State Office Building, 820 N. French Street, Wilmington. 

Image (L-R): Revolutionary Woman (2020); clay, underglaze, acrylic paint; 9”h x 5.5”w x 6”d; Dickens’ Uriah Heep (2020); clay, underglaze, acrylic paint; 9.5” x 5” x 5.5”; French Fop (2021); clay, underglaze, acrylic paint; 9” x 5.5” x 6”.

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Contact: Leeann Wallett, Program Officer, Community Engagement
302-577-8282, leeann.wallett@delaware.gov


The Delaware Division of the Arts, a branch of the Delaware Department of State, is dedicated to cultivating and supporting the arts to enhance the quality of life for all Delawareans. Together with its advisory body, the Delaware State Arts Council, the Division administers grants and programs that support arts programming, educate the public, increase awareness of the arts, and integrate the arts into all facets of Delaware life. For more information about the Delaware Division of the Arts, visit arts.delaware.gov or call 302-577-8278.

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The Mezzanine Gallery to Exhibit “Characters” by Gail Husch

Delaware Division of the Arts | Department of State | Featured Video | Kent County | New Castle County | News | Sussex County | Date Posted: Thursday, April 28, 2022


On the Mezzanine: May 2022 Artist Exhibition by Gail Husch

On view from May 6-30, 2022

Wilmington, Del. (April 28, 2022) – The Delaware Division of the Arts’ Mezzanine Gallery presents artist Gail Husch’s exhibition, Characters, running May 6 through 30, 2022. Her exhibit will also be part of Art Loop Wilmington — the monthly self-guided tour of art in and around the city. Guests are invited to attend a Meet-the-Artist Reception to be held Friday, May 6, from 5:00-7:00 p.m. 

A sculptor of whimsical figures and forms, Husch has been named a 2022 DDOA Emerging Artist Fellow in the Visual Arts discipline of Crafts.

After growing up in New Hampshire, Husch attended the University of South Florida, earning a BA in Art Education. She then moved on to Amherst College in Massachusetts for a Masters in Art History. In 1984, she and her husband made the trek to Delaware, where she pursued a PhD in Art History at the University of Delaware. She’s been a “Delawarean” ever since. Husch also taught art history at Goucher College near Baltimore from 1989 until her retirement in 2017.

Her imaginative creations are primarily small clay people who, as Husch describes, “…teeter on the edge of the ridiculous without losing their humanity.” Her figures are heavily inspired by literature and history, and by people she encounters or finds in pictures.

“…a smorgasbord of body shapes and movements, facial structures, and expressions,” Husch says. “I find characters from literature (especially Charles Dickens) and earlier historical periods especially compelling.”

Her love of this distinctive medium came one day over 40 years ago in a ceramics course that emphasized abstract vessels and forms. “I played with a lump of clay that turned into the crude figure of a woman in a bustled dress,” she recalls. “I was exhilarated by the transformation of malleable earth into a creature with its own expressive life.”

In her work, she favors such subjects that invite exaggeration in expression and pose. She’s drawn to the foolish and the extreme, and to characters who remind us that we might not see ourselves as others do.

“I gain immense satisfaction when I manage to achieve the right expression on a figure’s face, the right attitude of its body. It might take five, ten or twenty tries before the curl of a mouth, the flare of a nostril, or the tilt of a torso conveys something I intended. Each piece is the result of an immersive process of discovery.”

This exhibit not only features her small ceramic figures of literary and historical subjects, but also selections from a 32-piece chess set — a king, a queen, a bishop, a knight, two rooks, and two pawns — which she created in 2019. All the sculptures are stoneware; those in white clay have a black underglaze; acrylic paint adds color to the red and white clay figures.

The chess pieces are of particular curiosity; does she enjoy a good game of chess, we asked?

“I am not, in fact, a chess player, but the range in a set offered a rich field for exploration,” Husch says. “I tried to put into each piece some aspect of humanity, with a twist of humorous exaggeration — arrogant kings, condescending queens, belligerent knights, desiccated bishops, monstrous rooks, supplicating pawns.”

The Mezzanine Gallery, open weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., is located on the second floor of the Carvel State Office Building, 820 N. French Street, Wilmington. 

Image (L-R): Revolutionary Woman (2020); clay, underglaze, acrylic paint; 9”h x 5.5”w x 6”d; Dickens’ Uriah Heep (2020); clay, underglaze, acrylic paint; 9.5” x 5” x 5.5”; French Fop (2021); clay, underglaze, acrylic paint; 9” x 5.5” x 6”.

###

Contact: Leeann Wallett, Program Officer, Community Engagement
302-577-8282, leeann.wallett@delaware.gov


The Delaware Division of the Arts, a branch of the Delaware Department of State, is dedicated to cultivating and supporting the arts to enhance the quality of life for all Delawareans. Together with its advisory body, the Delaware State Arts Council, the Division administers grants and programs that support arts programming, educate the public, increase awareness of the arts, and integrate the arts into all facets of Delaware life. For more information about the Delaware Division of the Arts, visit arts.delaware.gov or call 302-577-8278.

image_printPrint

Related Topics:  , , , ,


Graphic that represents delaware news on a mobile phone

Keep up to date by receiving a daily digest email, around noon, of current news release posts from state agencies on news.delaware.gov.

Here you can subscribe to future news updates.