On Thursday, March 5th, there will be an artist reception for Jerry David Cornelia in the Dawson Community College Art Gallery 126 from 5:00 – 6:30 with an artist talk at 5:30. This gathering is free and open to the public. Please join us for a viewing of Jerry’s artwork, for conversation, and refreshments. If you can’t make it then, Gallery 126 is open Monday - Friday 8:00am - 4:00pm, and Tuesday-Thursday 6:30 – 9:00pm. Jerry’s artwork is on exhibit from March 2 – April 10. For more info: http://www.dawson.edu/
Regional art is alive and well in Eastern Montana. It’s amazing how many accomplished and talented artists live and work in our rural communities. One exemplary example is our neighbor, Jerry David Cornelia. After attending fashion design school in Atlanta and a ten year stint in New York City, painting mannequins, creating for store windows, and simultaneously sculpting classical forms and creating a diverse portfolio of paintings, including surrealistic, neo-expressionistic, and neo-primitive styles, Jerry returned to his hometown of Sidney, Montana, in 1995. Jerry says of his return to Montana, "I can make my own world here. There's a bigger void to fill. I live in a creative vacuum, where one painting inspires the next one and so on."
Nicole R. Todd, director of Visions West Gallery of Bozeman, Livingston, and Denver, the gallery that handles Jerry’s artwork, calls him “The Fabulist Painter.” Jerry has been a popular artist in the Yellowstone Art Museum’s Art Auction for a number of years, and he is exhibited and collected widely throughout the region. I quote the description of his art work for his one man show at the Yellowstone Art Museum in Billings, “Jerry Cornelia is known for his whimsical take on people and animals, and for paintings that tell fragments of stories that keep his viewers wanting more. With no formal art training, Cornelia has successfully compiled an eclectic body of work ranging from neo-primitive to very detailed figurative pieces. He has made a concerted effort not to be limited by self-imposed restrictions on the style or type of art he produces, switching easily from boldly expressionistic work to highly detailed paintings and sculptures. His background in fashion and display lends drama and character to his work, which is further enhanced by subtlety of surface and attention to finish.” Another distinctive and integral part of Jerry’s art work is the titles. For instance, "She might have looked like a simple girl... but Delores was fancy on the inside." gives the image a little twist.
Not only will we have the pleasure of seeing Jerry’s amusing and uniquely colorful artwork on exhibit at Dawson Community College, we will, also, have the opportunity to hang out with him, talk with him, and learn from his eclectic experiences and development as a professional artist at home and abroad.