Sears Art Museum at Utah Tech University to showcase the world of abstract art

Offering a visual journey through the realm of abstract art, the Sears Art Museum at Utah Tech University presents its latest exclusive exhibition, “The Abstract Impulse.”

Curated by Dr. James Peck, director and curator of the Sears Art Museum, the exhibition is on display Sept. 15 through Nov. 10 and will open with a reception from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Sept. 15 in the museum, located in the Eccles Fine Arts Center. There, featured artist Dennis Martinez will speak, a jazz trio will provide music and light refreshments will be served. The event is free and the public is encouraged to attend.

Peck has chosen examples of abstract art from the museum’s extensive archive, including nationally recognized artists as well as those closely associated with Utah. Complementing these selections are works contributed by Colleen Gianatiempo, Andrew Kosorok and G.K. Reiser, contemporary artists working in Southern Utah.

Adding a touch of artistic legacy to the event is an abstract painting by modern American artist Harry Bertoia. Loaned to this exhibition by the Harry Bertoia Foundation, this work unveils a lesser-known aspect of Bertoia’s multifaceted creativity: his abstract and surrealist-inspired prints and paintings.

“The exhibition offers viewers a bridge across time, connecting ancient cave wall paintings, the intricate designs of Native American pottery and the contemporary canvases that grace modern galleries,” Peck said. “This is a unique opportunity to witness something truly extraordinary, as ‘The Abstract Impulse’ stands as a testament to humanity’s innate urge to explore and interact with the mysteries of existence through artistic exploration.”

In the Eccles foyer, the spotlight falls on Dennis Martinez, a longtime art professor at Utah Tech. Martinez’s creative process takes center stage in several new artworks in which he blends painting, mixed media and collage techniques with elements of abstraction, expressionism and modern experimentation. The foyer exhibit also features abstract works by Chelsea Martinez and Elizbeth Matheson.

“My aspiration is for each viewer to depart with a personalized understanding and appreciation for the diverse spectrum encompassed by abstraction,” Dennis Martinez said.

The Sears Art Museum at Utah Tech University is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and admission is free. Learn more at