JACKSON, Tenn. – Jan. 24, 2003 – Union University's Art Department is currently displaying a selection of works by artist Roger Sullivan in the Union Art Gallery. The show, entitled "Life on the Farm," is free and open to the public through Friday, Feb. 7.
This is the second time Sullivan's works have been on display in the Union Gallery. His works first appeared during the senior exhibition of his nephew Jonathan Gillette last spring. Now Sullivan's works, which feature paintings of farmhouses, animals and objects, are on display alone.
Gillette describes his uncle's work as "childlike" and "beautiful." Sullivan paints from that perspective due to developmental disabilities resulting from a childhood bout with Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Sullivan's artistic talents caught the attention of his nephew, who encouraged and helped him develop as an artist. "He's always drawn," said Gillette, "but his talent went unnoticed at first. He eventually started to paint, beginning last Christmas."
Through his paintings, Sullivan offers the audience a view through his childlike eyes, showing what Gillette describes as the "beauty of the simple." This simplistic quality is what makes his works unique.
"I would describe his art as what most artists strive to do," he said. "He just paints, it's that simple. He's not worried about anything being wrong - whatever he does is perfect enough for him."
There will be an artist's reception in the gallery on Feb. 7 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Both Gillette and Sullivan will be there to meet with those who attend. Gallery hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 1 p.m. through 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
For more information about this and other exhibits coming to Union University, contact the Art Department at (731) 661-5075.
By Tracie Holden
Class of 2004