Art notes: Museum celebrates Gruber's artistry

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Artist Aaronel deRoy Gruber died in 2011, but her legacy remains in paintings, sculpture and photographs made during a long and fruitful career. Many know her for her photography, which with video was the last medium she embraced. But in the 1960s she was a sculptor, welding steel, forming aluminum and constructing show-stopping Plexiglas pieces that she lit and motorized.

Westmoreland Museum of American Art puts those in the spotlight in "Aaronel deRoy Gruber: Art(ist) in Motion," which opens with a free public reception from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Saturday (reservations appreciated).

Related programming includes (free):

Noon March 20, "Classy Glass: More Than Hot Air" -- Harley Trice presents an illustrated history of the early regional glass industry and the hand-blown leaded crystal of the Bryce Brothers Glass Co. Mr. Trice is great-great-grandson of James Bryce, who began as an apprentice glassblower with Bakewell, Pittsburgh, in 1827.

6 p.m. March 22, "Generation Gap" -- Two generations of Pittsburgh artists, Charlee Brodsky and Jane Haskell, talk about their personal and professional journeys launched in very different time periods.

6 p.m. April 26, "Love & Art: Stories With Irv" -- Irv Gruber met Aaronel deRoy at a Carnegie Institute of Technology fraternity dance. He shares stories of their three children and a relationship that spanned 71 years.

Noon May 15, "Can You Do That in Public?" -- The placement, care and feeding of public artworks will be discussed by Renee Piechocki, artist, public art consultant and founding director of Pittsburgh's Office of Public Art, a partnership of the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council and the City of Pittsburgh Department of City Planning.

6 p.m. May 17, "The Man Behind the Camera" -- Pittsburgh filmmaker Kenneth Love talks about making the documentary "Aaronel deRoy Gruber: A Life in Art." The film will be screened regularly during the exhibition run at the museum.

The exhibition continues through June 2 at 221 N. Main St., Greensburg. Admission is $5 suggested donation for adults; children under 12 and students, free. Hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays and until 8 p.m. Fridays. Information: 724-837-1500 or

'Feminine Aesthetics'

Elizabeth Asche Douglas will talk about curating the exhibition "Feminine Aesthetics" at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, 709 Penn Gallery, 709 Penn Ave., Downtown. The talk is free. The exhibition, comprising work by 13 artists of the Women of Visions collective, continues through March 31.

Global art project

An international Web-based participatory art project modeled on the Surrealists' "Exquisite Corpse" is hoping to create the world's biggest and most diverse artwork with your help. As with the original "Cadavre Exquis," the piece grows as individuals add to what has been done by the previous contributor. Participants sign up for a three-hour time slot and may work in any medium. There is no fee to participate, nor payment for the work, but there are plans to exhibit the resultant piece internationally. I was contacted by Marco Albert, a University of Pittsburgh accounting and marketing major, whose avocation is photography. While the focus is on artists and student communities, the project is open to everyone. Sponsors are Red Bull and Adobe. Information:


Post-Gazette art critic Mary Thomas: or 412-263-1925.


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