New art exhibit open in Humanities Art Center

Aug 8, 2014

Two local artists, including one Kettering University graduate, have art displayed in the Kettering University Humanities Art Center.

Top: Viracocha by Christopher Watson. Bottom: Ropes on Tarangini by Matthew Malott.

A new exhibit featuring the work of two local artists is currently on display in the Kettering University Humanities Art Center and Gallery, located on the third floor of the Academic Building near the Liberal Studies Department offices.

Straight Lines: The Art of Draftsmanship features selected pieces from Matthew Malott ‘00 and Christopher Watson and will be on display through Oct. 23, 2014.

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“Matthew is a Kettering graduate and engineer and Christopher has had a long career in the automotive industry, so the artistic work of both draws some inspiration from their technical backgrounds,” said Regina Schreck, curator of the Humanities Art Center and Gallery. “The pieces on display capture the world around each artist with intricate detail and realism only achieved by seasoned draftsmen and show how each has learned to integrate both the intellectual and creative sides of their personalities.”

A reception for all Kettering University students, faculty and staff, as well as special invited guests, is planned for noon-2 p.m. on Sept. 8. Kettering University President Robert K. McMahan will provide remarks at 12:30 p.m. Attendees will have an opportunity to meet the artists and learn more about the Humanities Art Center and Gallery.

Malott, an environmental engineer with Delphi, received a master’s degree in Manufacturing Management from Kettering University. Malott’s primary media include pencil (graphite) and watercolor. His subjects are precisely drawn from nature and natural settings with hard edge lines seen throughout his artwork. They range from beautiful settings on Mackinac Island and Lake Superior to the intricate detail of the Great Lakes Tall Ships or Detroit and Chicago cityscapes.

His black and white portraits are noted for their tremendous detail and realism while his watercolors demonstrate technique and control not typical with water-based media.

“Honestly I like the brilliancy and detail that modern watercolors provide,” Malott said. “To me watercolors have such dimension and depth because you’re contrasting the clean white of the paper with these wonderful, bright, permanent hues. It’s like this incredibly natural and simple media with truly unlimited potential. It is nothing like the dry, dull watercolor trays we all remember.”

A self-taught artist since the age of five, Watson, a Beecher High School graduate, has been creating realistic art for many years. From pencil to paint, small portraits to larger than life murals, he continues to bring to life real people through art.

“At an early age I was inspired by an uncle who drew portraits with pencil,” Watson said. “My favorite was one that he created on a window shade for lack of paper. I watched it come to life as I sat on the bedroom floor in amazement. I recognized her. Her name was ‘Antoinette.’ He was his sister’s best friend and I was hooked.”

He was formerly a painter’s apprentice at an outdoor advertising firm, then called Gannett Outdoor. He also taught himself graphic design as the industry changed from hand-painted pictures to computer painted imagery. He left Gannett (Viacom) in 2001 and started his own company, Boy with Ball, LLC. He is also on the management team at General Motors Customer Care and Aftersales.

Watson specialized in commissions for individuals and local corporations such as Hurley Medical Center’s series for Samuel R. Dismond Jr., MD Family Art Collection and pastel images for other collections such as Portrait of William White, Mott Foundation President along with other board members of Job Central (currently Career Alliance), and a 10’ x 60’ mural for General Motors SPO, along with many portraits for private collections.

He has also mentored young Flint area artists through the Sylvester Broom Center after school programs since 2002.

The exhibition features approximately 20 drawings, watercolors and oils. Gallery hours for Kettering University students, faculty and staff are Monday-Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The public is welcome to visit the exhibit. Viewings can be coordinated by contacting Regina Schreck, rschreck@kettering.edu.


Written By Patrick Hayes | Contact: Patrick Hayes - phayes@kettering.edu - (810) 762-9639