George Blaha: HD

August 8 – September 20, 2015
Arrowhead Gallery
George_Blaha.jpg
HD by George Blaha, 2015, Digital image, dimensions variable

George Blaha's Artist Statement:
Know all things to be like this:
A mirage, a cloud castle,
A dream, an apparition,
Without essence, but with qualities that can be seen.
Know all things to be like this:
As a magician makes illusions
Of horses, oxen, carts and other things,
Nothing is at it appears.
  – Samadhirajasutra

This quote from the Buddha articulates the underlying tenant of my work. I represent this idea metaphorically through drawings, paintings, and sculptures created with digital software. Materially, the objects do not exist, yet presented as inkjet prints, they have qualities that can be seen and interpreted. The inspiration for this show is drawn from my interest in the effect of pixelization on photographic images, as well as in the visual language used in the virtual computer world of Minecraft.

Bio:
Chicago based artist George Blaha earned his BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1980. He also studied Art History and Philosophy at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and Digital Arts at Oakton Community College in Des Plaines, IL. Blaha’s drawings, paintings, and sculptures use metaphor to engage the audience in actively questioning the nature of phenomena. By using the computer as a tool in realizing his ideas, Blaha can highlight the issues at hand without the limitations of physics. Notably his artistic practice is influenced and intertwined with his contemplative practices of geometry and over thirty years of Buddhist meditation.

George Blaha has frequently exhibited in Chicago. His most recent solo show was at Firecat Projects. Blaha’s work has been featured at Illinois venues such as the Illinois State Museum (Springfield), the University Galleries at the Illinois State University (Normal), and the Evanston Art Center as a part of the 15th and the 16th Evanston + Vicinity Biennials. His work has been presented at national venues including The Marsh Art Gallery at the University of Richmond Museums, Richmond, VA; Stedman Gallery, Rutgers-Camden Center for the Arts, Rutgers University, Camden, NJ; Tweed Museum of Art, University of Minnesota Duluth, MN; Gibson Gallery, Art Museum of SUNY, Potsdam, NY; Gallery of Contemporary Art, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, CO; and the Arts and Science Center for Southeastern Arkansas, Pine Bluff, AR. Blaha has also exhibited in New York, including his participation with the Postcards from the Edge Visual AIDS Benefit hosted by New York galleries from 2002-2006. Starting on July 30, his work will be on view at the Central Booking Gallery in New York.

In 2011, Blaha received the Illinois Arts Council’s Individual Artist Support Professional Development Grant. His work has been discussed in catalogs that accompanied the exhibitions Contemporary Art and the Mathematical Instinct, and The UFO Show. Press coverage of his work includes the Arts Magazine, New City, and the Chicago Tribune. Blaha has also been featured in George Quasha’s Art Is: Speaking Portraits, an on going web-based video research project investigating practitioners’ definition of what art is.

Lecture: September 17, 2015
in Von Ohlen Hall, room 201, Sugar Grove Campus
All our lectures are free and open to the general public.

Workshop: September 17, 2015
in Von Ohlen Hall, room 201, Sugar Grove Campus
Our workshops are open to all current WCC students (registration required).

For more information about the art exhibitions at Waubonsee Community College, contact Cecilia Vargas, Art Coordinator, at (630) 466-7900, ext. 2964.

Contact

Art Department:
WCCArtDepartment@waubonsee.edu

Art Coordinator:
Cecilia Vargas, Von Ohlen Hall 209
(630) 466-7900 ext. 2964
cvargas@waubonsee.edu

Art Lab Assistant:
Esther Espino, Von Ohlen Hall 240
(630) 466-7900 ext. 5742
eespino@waubonsee.edu