School of Art Presents Painting Exhibition of Lani Irwin, Alan Feltus

Posted: April 2, 2010 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: April 1, 2010 at 3:54 pm

The paintings of Lani Irwin and Alan Feltus investigate the human form and the relationships among figures and the space in the painting, as well as the relationship between the figures and the viewer.

Mason’s School of Art presents Irwin and Feltus’ painting exhibition in the Fine Arts Gallery in the Art and Design Building on Mason’s Fairfax Campus from April 5 through May 3.

An opening reception will be held on Wednesday, April 7, from 6 to 8 p.m.

Although the beautiful and haunting figures in Irwin and Feltus’ work seem to be in the middle of a gesture or pose, there is no story associated with action in the painting and the interpretation of what occurs between the figures in the painting is left to the viewer.

Originally from the Washington metropolitan area, the husband-and-wife team now resides in the countryside on the outskirts of the Umbrian city of Assisi, Italy, a place of pilgrimage for admirers of St. Francis and the painter Giotto, who was an early figure in the Italian Renaissance and among the couple’s greatest influences.

Feltus received his BFA from The Cooper Union and his MFA from Yale University. Feltus taught briefly at The Dayton Institute in Ohio before accepting a teaching position at American University, where he was an associate professor from 1972 to 1984.

Irwin studied abroad at the University of Maryland’s Munich, Germany, campus and the University of Grenoble in France, before completing her BA and MFA at American University. After graduation, she taught at Northern Virginia Community College and Trinity College in Washington, D.C.

In 2006, Irwin and Feltus were visiting artists-in-residence at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Md. Irwin and Feltus are both recipients of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, and Feltus has also received a National Endowment of the Arts Individual Fellowship, a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Grant in Painting and a Rome Prize Fellowship, among other awards.

The couple has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions across the United States and Europe, and their work is in the public collections of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden and the National Museum of American Art in Washington, D.C., the Bayly Museum in Charlottesville, Va., and The Peace Museum in Chicago.

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