December 17, 2008

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LEWISBURG, Pa. — The Samek Art Gallery at Bucknell University will present the exhibition, "Of Rage and Redemption: The Art of Oswaldo Guayasamin," from Jan. 26 through March 27. || Related story: The Daily Item

"This landmark exhibition, the first of its kind in the United States in more than 50 years, presents the work of the great but underexposed Ecuadorian painter and graphic artist, Oswaldo Guayasamin," said Dan Mills, director of the Samek Art Gallery.

"I am delighted the Samek Art Gallery is able to bring this important exhibition to Bucknell and the region," said Mills.

Joseph Mella, who is director of the Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery, will give the talk, "Oswaldo Guayasamin: A Life in Art, Conflict and Resistance," on Friday, Jan. 30, at 7 p.m. in the Forum of the Elaine Langone Center. The talk is open to the public without charge.

Curated by Mella, the exhibition was organized by the Center for Latin American and Iberian Studies at Vanderbilt University and the Vanderbilt University Fine Arts Gallery with the full cooperation of the Fundacion Guayasamin, Quito, Ecuador, the largest repository of the artist's work in the Americas.

'El Toro y el Condor (The Bull and the Condor)', 1957Focus on difficult subjects
Guayasamin's work focuses on difficult subjects and evokes strong emotional responses, including the horrors of war, the injustices of inequality and discrimination, and the rights of women, children and indigenous peoples.

Works in the exhibition speak to Latin American and universal issues of war and peace, social conflict, and human compassion.

"My painting is to hurt, to scratch and hit inside people's hearts. To show what Man does against Man," said Guayasamin, who died in 1999 at age 79.

"Guayasamin was the winner of biennials in Barcelona and São Paulo, recipient of France's Legion of Honor, and recognized by UNESCO with its Jose Marti Prize. His work reflects his lifelong commitment to peace and social justice," Mella said.

More than 80 works
According to Mella, "Of Rage and Redemption" includes more than 80 works from Guayasamin's early paintings responding to Ecuador's four-day civil war of 1932 and the plight of indigenous people, his mature work that addresses human suffering in the context of war and justice, to what he called "La Ternura" ("The Tenderness"), his final period beginning in the mid-1980s.

After premiering at Vanderbilt University in early 2008, the exhibition has traveled to the Art Museum of the Americas in Washington, D.C., Museo Alameda in San Antonio, and Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton. After Bucknell, it will complete its North American tour at Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach.

This exhibition is supported, in part, by a generous gift from Susan and Ruff Fant. Additional support has been provided by the Louise Bullard Wallace Foundation, Nashville; the College of Arts and Science, Vanderbilt University; the Fundacion Guayasamin; the Embassy of Ecuador; the Mission of Ecuador to the Organization of American States; and American Airlines.

Peace & Resistance series
The exhibition, which is part of the University's "Peace & Resistance" series, was honored by the Southeastern College Art Conference (SECAC) with the Award for Outstanding Exhibition and Catalogue of Contemporary Materials.

The yearlong "Peace & Resistance" series is a multidisciplinary program that links the 25th anniversary of Bucknell University having an art gallery, the 10th anniversary of the Bucknell Brigade to Nicaragua, and 125 years of women at Bucknell. For more information, visit 'Peace & Resistance.'

The Samek Art Gallery is located on the third floor of the Elaine Langone Center. Admission is free. Gallery hours are weekdays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursdays 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; weekends 1 to 5 p.m., and by appointment. The Gallery is accessible by elevator. For more information about the gallery, call 570-577-3792 or visit

Contact: Division of Communications