July 20 – October 7, 2018
The Mennello Museum of American Art is pleased to present THE COLLECTORS PASSION: PAINTINGS BY LAURENCE A. CAMPBELL. The exhibition will be on view in the Mennello Museum’s Marilyn Gallery from July 20 through October 7, 2018, with an Opening Reception on July 20.
THE COLLECTORS PASSION: PAINTINGS BY LAURENCE A. CAMPBELL presents the continued interest and art connoisseurship of the Mennello Museum’s co-founder, Michael A. Mennello. His passion further influences this drive to collect in the myriad of people he befriends, including the Keen and Perez families. In particular, these individuals take immense joy in the paintings of the great American cityscape draped in American flags in seasons, and paintings inspired by the impressionists. Campbell’s scenes of his native Philadelphia and New York City extoll his own, and by extension his collectors’, pride in country and admiration for the historic architecture established in the American city.
Laurence A. Campbell is a modern painter who conveys a quiet contemplation of life in big cities during the latter half of the 20th century. His snow covered cities depicted in the style of heavy brush strokes in light and color are a nod to the impressionists before him, building upon the method and making it his own. Campbell was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1939, growing up with the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in his backyard and a few blocks from the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Campbell is known to have visited the PMA often throughout his youth, spurring his imagination and admiration for art, which propelled him to study architecture at Temple University. Later, he established his own construction firm. During his time in construction, Campbell also worked restoring art pieces, giving him the advantage of studying the methodology and technicality of masterpieces. From there, Campbell painted commissions requested by clients for recreations of their favorite works. Establishing his own gallery in 1970, Campbell too continued depicting his own favored subjects, scenes of city high rises covered in snow, under rain, and with the setting sun of an autumn day.
With a selection of seventeen pieces from local collectors, this exhibit presents stunning examples in both intimate and large-scale works on panel and canvas. Never before seen in the museum setting, they highlight the variety of city spaces, times, and seasons that inspired the hand of this little-known painter. Campbell emulates the themes and sentiments of Childe Hassam’s WWI flag displays along 5th Avenue and Guy C. Wiggin’s snow drenched streets and their people in New York, bringing in his own ambitions, creating unique compositions that favor an intense and muted palate inspired by the changes in natural light of seasons in the city at landmarks from the great Ironside to Trinity Church and the surrounding 5th Avenue and Wall Street in New York. The individuality of people stands out in Campbell’s paintings, determined as the skyscrapers, standing their ground in the harsh but beautiful weather.
COLLECTORS PASSION is curated by Katherine E. Navarro, Marilyn L. Mennello Associate Curator of Education. The Mennello Museum is pleased to present paintings from the collections of Michael A. Mennello, The Allan E. and Linda S. Keen Family, and Dr. Manuel and Destiny Perez. An exhibition catalog will be accompanying the exhibition with an essay written by Navarro.
Please save the date for the opening reception of THE COLLECTORS PASSION: PAINTINGS BY LAURENCE A. CAMPBELL.
Member Preview & Opening Reception
Friday, July 20, 2018
5:30 – 7:30 pm