Public Building Commission
Jim McClelland is the artist for this Friday's, December 6, 2013, First Friday Art Exhibit at the County City Building - the reception is from 5:30 to 7:30 with Artist Talk at 7:15. Exhibition will run from December 2014 thru February 2014.
Artist's Statement, Jim McClelland
To be able to see everything along the way was my deep desire, even as a very young child when I would come face to face with the natural world around me. I grew up in the farming communities of Michigan where the natural world around me was my playground and classroom. I had a passion for drawing what I saw. School became a very important place for me too because it was there that teachers helped give me a sense of serf-worth that I found nowhere else. They encourage my artistic sensibilities and set me on a path from which I have never wavered, teaching and art. . . . .
It became natural that my love for the things of nature and my love for art would come together. While I was primarily trained in abstract expressions when I was in college, the need and desire to paint the natural would around me persissted. Now it is not alone to be able to see that I paint, but to experience the world around me as well.
My paintings have been exhibited and collected throughout the United States and beyond. An affiliation with Wild Wings Gallery in Minnesota gave wider exposure to my painting. Additionally, I have collaborated with noted ornithologist and author of books on bird life, Dr. Paul Johnsgard, in several of his publications. The most notable of these is Hummingbirds of North America, published by Smithsonian Press. I have also been published by organizations such as National Wildlife Federation and others. Many of my paintings have won a variety of awards.
I have served as Professor of Art at Union College for nearly forty years. My love of birds and nature is surpassed only by my love for my family, friends and students. To these I have had a sacred privilege of being associated and I am completing my 50th year of teaching as well as 50 years or marriage. My family, friends and students, as well as nature, have been my inspiration and support as a teacher and as an artist.