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arts & leisure

Upchurch paintings on display

Wendell Upchurch painted many self portraits in his lifetime. This one is titled “Mirrored Image,” circa mid- 1970s.
Contributed photo

August 28, 2013

BARRYVILLE, NY — An art exhibition, “Through the Eyes of Wendell M. Upchurch,” will be on view on Saturday, August 31 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the River Market, 3385 Rte. 97. This event is the fourth in a series of collaborations between the market and UpFront Exhibition Space of Port Jervis, which owns the rights to much of Upchurch’s collection of paintings. Upchurch died 13 years ago.

Also partnering in the event will be the publishers of Green Door magazine, who will offer preview copies of the magazine’s forthcoming fall issue. “Green Door is excited to partner with UpFront Exhibition Space and the River Market to celebrate the art of Wendell M. Upchurch, the spirit of community and to preview our fall issue cover girl,” co-publisher Ellie Ohiso said.

Food and wine will be served.

An award winning artist, Upchurch was an obsessive painter, creating with acrylic, oil, pencil and pastels on canvas, cloth, burlap, board and paper—whatever was available when he needed to express himself. His work includes nudes, landscapes, still-life and portraits. He also painted demons, freaks and wild animals. (Many of the demons are Upchurch himself.) In most of his many self portraits, the eyes seem to follow the observer from whatever position one views the paintings. In the last 10 years of his life, his work took on a new, happier tone after he was married.

Upchurch also taught art and art history in many schools and colleges, lectured widely, and received many grants.