Franciscan artist Fr. Jerry Bleem, OFM, will be honored with a one-person exhibition at his alma mater, Quincy University.
Fr. Bleem’s works in a variety of media will be on display in the Gray Gallery of Brenner Library Sept. 9 – Oct. 5 during the Outstanding Alumni Invitational Exhibition. A gallery reception will be held on Saturday, Oct. 5, 3 – 4:30 p.m. during Alumni Homecoming Weekend. Both the exhibition and the reception will be open to the public without charge, thanks to sponsorship by the division of fine arts and communication.
Fr. Bleem (QU ’76) earned his M.F.A. at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and his M.Div. from the Catholic Theological Union at Chicago.
His works on paper and his 3-dimensional creations explore the relationship between value and identity, frequently discovering the potential of discarded materials. According to the artist, “The resulting work mines topics ranging from apprehension to beauty, ecology to politics.”
The Illinois Arts Council has recognized his achievements with five individual artist fellowships. He has also been awarded an Arts Midwest/NEA Regional Visual Arts Fellowship and numerous residencies including the Roswell Artist-in-Residence grant.
Fr. Bleem has taught in the Department of Fiber and Material Studies of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago since 2000. During the 2008-9 academic year, Arizona State University named him a visiting professor in its School of Art.
He also serves as postulancy director for the Sacred Heart Province of the Franciscan order. In his writing, he investigates the intersection of art and religion in a monthly column for U. S. Catholic magazine; his articles have also appeared in SDA Journal, Fiberarts and exhibition catalogs.
Additional information about the alumni exhibition is available from Bob Mejer, gallery curator, at 228-5371.
Founded in 1860 by Franciscan friars, Quincy University (www.quincy.edu) is a Catholic, co-educational, residential university offering undergraduate, graduate, and adult education programs that integrate liberal arts, active learning, practical experience, and Franciscan values. The university has 15 intercollegiate sports and is a member of the NCAA Division II Great Lakes Valley Conference for men and women.