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Aaron Fine: Experiments on Paper - Narrative Stories

Art adorning the walls of the new exhibition to open Jan. 15 at The Ashby-Hodge Gallery of American Art at Central Methodist University teases the imagination and tests human Aaron Fine

It is unconventional in form, cosmic and terrestrial in narrative. Many of the 16 mixed-media-on-paper pieces are anchored at the ceiling and flow down the walls of the gallery and out onto the floor â- vertical scrolls composed of myriad, seemingly disparate elements that, once absorbed and assimilated by the mind, represent the whole – the meaning or symbolism of the work. But the interpretations will vary by viewer, which is the intent of artist Aaron Fine.

As a mixed-media artist, Fine likes to work with paper presented in long vertical scrolls as well as long, horizontal compositions. "My work," he says in an artist's statement, "creates an imaginary relationship between the beholder and the bodies depicted. The means I use toward this end include the implications of perspective space, the visual appeal of color, and the emotional investment of narrative. Because I [involve] the audience in the artwork, [their] views transform my private reveries into new public meanings."

Leighton HouseFine's art reflects a diverse and universal intellect and often incorporates the cross cultural elements of the mystical and spiritual East and industrial West. His modern and somewhat abstract perspectives are noted in titles of pieces such as "The Crypt," "Buddha’s Spots," "Blocks," "The Night Ceiling," and "Eve in Saint Stephen's" - a nude posed in the lower foreground against a diverse compositional background of vaulted arches and windows. In many pieces, strong vertical lines connect various elements framed in bright splashes of color - blues, reds, oranges underlain by subtle grays and solid blacks.

Fine, a well-known and widely exhibited Missouri artist, is an assistant professor of art and art gallery director at Truman State University in Kirksville. He is also a member of the Missouri London Consortium faculty, London, England, where he has taught in the study abroad program. He has also been a member of the Missouri Scholars Academy, Columbia, Mo., where he taught courses in Color and Symmetry and Perspectives.

He holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Claremont Graduate University in California and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Ohio University. He has also studied abroad at Parson's College of Design in Paris.

Fine's art has been exhibited widely throughout Missouri, California, Illinois, and Ohio, and he has been recognized with numerous honors in the art world, including the Solomon Smith Barney Prize at Winston-Salem (North Carolina) Art Center, Merit Award at Parkersburg (West Virginia) Art Center and the President's Choice Purchase Award at Claremont Graduate University.