TUSCALOOSA, Ala.— Paintings by contemporary realist and University of Alabama alumna Dale Kennington will be on display from Monday, Feb. 1, to Friday, March 11, at the UA Gallery in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center in downtown Tuscaloosa.
The exhibit, titled “Real Lives: Observations and Reflections by Dale Kennington,” showcases scenes from ordinary life, including getting haircut and waiting for a train. Dr. Lee A. Gray, independent curator for The Mennello Museum of American Art in Orlando, Florida, organized the exhibit.
Kennington, of Dothan, will attend a reception from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 11, at the gallery. The public is invited, free of charge, to the reception and exhibition.
“The most powerful element of [Kennington’s] work is by far the quality of light,” Gray writes in the companion catalog for the exhibit. It creates what he calls “an unsettling tone that is haunting and disturbing for its ambivalence.” Still, he writes, “We are drawn into the scenes because of their visual depth and intimate sensuality.”
After earning her bachelor’s degree in art history and design from UA in 1956, Kennington married her husband, Don, and became a stay-at-home mom. She continued to study art. In her early 40s, she began painting portraits for clients and her own family.
By the mid-1980s, Kennington suspended her commissioned portrait business to focus on studio work. Frequent trips to Paris and her local milieu served as the subject matter for which she has become well-known and received multiple awards. In 2009, Kennington was recognized by the Alabama State Council on the Arts. She later received the Alabama Governor’s Arts Awards and was named one of Alabama’s Master Artists by the Alabama Bureau of Tourism and Travel. Her work is found in private collections and museums across the nation.
The University of Alabama Gallery offers a year-round schedule of exhibitions of artistic works, artifacts and textiles and other media from permanent collections held by UA as well as works by faculty, students and guest artists and designers.
The gallery is at 620 Greensboro Ave. in downtown Tuscaloosa and is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and until 8 p.m. on the first Fridays of the month. For more information, call the gallery at 205/345-3038 or 205/342-2060.
The gallery is part of UA’s College of Arts and Sciences, the University’s largest division and the largest liberal arts college in the state. Students from the College have won numerous national awards including Rhodes and Goldwater scholarships.