, N.J. - Renowned artist Mel Leipzig, of Trenton, has made
a second home at Mercer County Community College as a professor
of Fine Arts and Art History. So what could be more fitting
than the college's Gallery hosting a one-man show from June
7-14 of nine of Leipzig's recent paintings of MCCC faculty,
staff and students.
Set in offices and other spaces around the campus, the show's
featured subjects include Leipzig's fellow faculty members
Kyle Stevenson (Fine Arts), Sarah Sweeney (Digital Media Arts),
Michael Dalton (Photography), John Monahan (Photography),
Barry Levy (Television), Steve Voorhees (Television), Mitch
Canter (Radio), Doug Fee and Frank Benowitz (Hotel, Restaurant
and Institution Management.)
Leipzig's zest for the details of daily life draws viewers
to every corner of these large-scale paintings. "I like
all the detail and clutter. I find it beautiful," he
says. "I don't like things too clean." Interesting
angles and ceilings figure conspicuously into many of the
MCCC Gallery Curator Tricia Fagan is herself the subject of
the biggest painting, which is set in her living room. It
captures her singing, accompanied by her husband Wilbo Wright
on bass. Details from books on the staircase to a portion
of an armchair are squeezed into the painting, along with
artists' canvasses wrapped in plastic, oriental rugs and a
ceiling fan. An additional painting depicts three students
of faculty member Jody Person as they rehearse for a student
production of "Peer Gynt" in the college's Studio
In his artist's statement Leipzig says, "Over the past
40 years, my paintings have been concerned with the relationship
of figures, painted directly from life, to their environment."
He notes that he never paints from photos, which "would
dilute the intensity of the feeling that I am seeking."
Leipzig has always worked with a limited palette; at present,
he works in only four colors - dark red, blue, yellow and
How does one get on Mel's "to do" list? "They
are people who pique my interest. I have to love them,"
Leipzig says simply.
The Gallery will be open Sunday, June 12, 2-5 p.m., and Tuesday,
June 14, 5-8 p.m. More about the MCCC Gallery is available
and Fee in the Culinary Lab.