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Douglas Semivan ’71, “Deep Ocean Blue”, mixed media, 47”x 37” on paper

Olivet College will present “Fifty years — 1971-2021” by Douglas K. Semivan ’71 and James Herbst ’71 on Sept. 30 – Oct. 28, 2021. A reception will be held on Saturday, Oct. 9, 5-7 p.m., during Homecoming Weekend. The exhibition and reception will be held at the Kresge Foundation Art Gallery inside the Riethmiller Blackman Art Building. The gallery is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The gallery will also be open for a special viewing prior to the reception on Oct. 9, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public.

Douglas K. Semivan ’71

Douglas K. Semivan ’71 is a studio artist and educator who was recently appointed to professor emeritus of the art department at Madonna University. He has been a visiting artist at four colleges and universities in Wisconsin, Washington and Michigan. Prior to his current teaching position, Semivan previously served as instructor of lithography at Vancouver School of Art and Wayne State University, and he was the director of the Detroit Artists Market. Semivan has works in the permanent collections of several museums, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Detroit Institute of Art, Brooklyn Museum, Toledo Museum and Grand Rapids Art Museum. His works are also part of the collections of several corporations. Semivan received his Bachelor of Arts from Olivet College in 1971 and received his Master of Fine Arts from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1973.

“The work in this exhibition references the development and evolution of a visual vocabulary — a language of mark, color, form, space and composition — subject (the image you see) and content (the story I tell),” Semivan said. “Each element is specific, yet driven together to create a work of art, that if, as has been said, ‘one element goes missing and the whole thing falls apart.’”

James Herbst ’71

James Herbst ’71, “Blackbird”, analogue collage, 6 x 8.5

James Herbst ’71 focuses his work on analogue collage, assemblage and photography. He matriculated at Olivet College in 1967 where he became involved in printmaking under the direction of Stephen Hazel at the Nez Perce Workshop at Olivet College. Herbst was an apprentice from 1969-71 under the direction of Professor Emeritus of Art Donald Rowe. He received a Bachelor of Arts in graphic design from Olivet in 1971 and then attended and taught at the Hartford Art School while beginning postgraduate work in printmaking. Herbst finished his postgraduate studies at Cranbrook Academy of Art in printmaking and photography, receiving his Master of Fine Arts in 1974. He taught printmaking and drawing at the University of Connecticut in 1978-79. Subsequently, Herbst developed a career in architectural painting as a decorative artist, working both privately and commercially from 1980-2019.

“I was drawn to printmaking initially by the mystery of the process; ie, the actions and choices taken to achieve the final result, which took place on a matrix that was then engaged in producing the final print, in multiples. The discipline of creating an edition was an act of pleasure and the beginning of my appreciation in the joy of being present,” Herbst said. “In recent years, I have been working collaboratively with artists from Europe to New Zealand in a number of venues. My interest in photography focuses, so to speak, on details, and I have been working on a series of macro works from a variety of sources for the past several years. Being present in one’s work is where the joy lies.”

For more information, contact Gary Wertheimer, professor of art, at 269-749-7627. Learn more about Olivet College by contacting the Office of Admission at 800-456-7189 or admissions@olivetcollege.edu.

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