Maureen McCabe’s Realia

January 25 – March 22

Alva Gallery is pleased to announce the opening of Realia – defined as “Educational objects, such as coins, tools, etc., used by a teacher to illustrate everyday living. 2. Philosophical things that are real” – which will feature the work of noted assemblage artist Maureen McCabe. The exhibition will open on Saturday, January 25th with a public reception from 5:30 to 7:30 pm and will run until March 22nd.

Viewing Maureen McCabe’s art is an experience that is both mesmerizing and instructive. The rich imagery of her assemblages draws on myths and ancient tales, superstitions and traditions, the animal kingdom, her Irish heritage and the heavens. By combining these images with real artifacts, the objects of “realia” which she gathers on her travels, McCabe produces renditions of times and places that allude to the factual, but have become infused with the magical. While at first glance McCabe’s collages may seem haphazard, they are anything but. As Grace Glueck commented in her New York Times review of McCabe’s 2001 show at the Kouros Gallery, N.Y., “The riddles of these carefully plotted and cleverly executed works are a challenge that adds to their appeal.” In case you need a road map, on the back of each work McCabe meticulously documents both the contents and the process of the assemblage.

Ms. McCabe is currently the Joanne Toor Cummings ’50 Professor of Studio Art at Connecticut College where she has taught since 1971. She was a participant in the 9th International Exhibition of Contemporary Collage in Paris/Sergines, France in 2002 as well as the 40th Anniversary Exhibition at the Allan Stone Gallery, N.Y. She has been the recipient of grants from the Rockefeller Foundation as a Bellagio Study Center artist-in-resident, The Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Ireland, the Connecticut Commission on the Arts and others. In 1997-98 she received the John S. King Faculty Teaching Award in recognition of teaching excellence.

Feather Man, Mixed Media on Paper and Wood, 25″ x 20″ x 4″, 2000

Big Shot, Mixed Media on Aluminum Mounted on Wood, 47″ x 34″ x 3″, 2002


Amazon Woman, Mixed Media on Double Slate, 20″ x 25.5″ x 4″, 2002


Mesmerism, 18″ x 18.5″ x 2″, Mixed Media on Paper, 2001


Sun Watch, 21″ x 18.5″ x 2″, Mixed Media on Paper, 2001


Pyro Man, Mixed Media on Slate, 14″ x 12.5″ x 4″, 2002


Pennies From Heaven, Mixed Media on Slate / Antique 19th Century Frame, 16″ x 14″ x 4″, 2002


Really #2, Mixed Media on Paper, 18″ x 18″ x 2″, 2001


Andromeda, Mixed Media on Wood and Slate, 22″ x 20″ x 2.5″, 1999


American Black Bear, Mixed Media on Slate and Wood, 37″ x 41″ x 5″, 1993


Mr. Zodiac, Mixed Media on Slate, 14″ x 12″ x 4″, 2002


Mr. Zodiac, Mixed Media on Slate, 14″ x 12″ x 4″, 2002

Cupid and Attraction Powder, Mixed Media on Slate, 11.5″ diameter