PATRICIA BELLAN GILLEN
Patricia Bellan-Gillen lives and works in rural Western Pennsylvania. She recently retired from Carnegie Mellon University after 29 years as a professor in the School of Art where she held the Dorothy L. Stubnitz Endowed Chair in Art. The university honored her with the Ryan Award for Meritorious Teaching in 2000. Bellan-Gillen’s paintings, prints and drawings have been the focus of over 50 solo exhibitions including venues in Washington DC, Nashville, TN, Las Cruces, NM, Albany, NY, Bloomington, IL Portland, OR, Grand Rapids, MI, Wellington, NZ and Wimbledon/London, UK. Her work has been included in numerous group shows in museums, commercial galleries, university galleries, and alternative spaces. Venues have included: Hudson River Museum, Yonkers, NY, Chelsea Museum of Art, New York, NY, The Art Museum at FIU, Miami, FL, Frans Masreel Centrum, Belgium, University Art Museum, Laramie, WY, Tacoma Museum of Art, Tacoma, WA and the Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art, Nagoya, Japan. A solo exhibition of her large scale drawings is scheduled for the McDonough Museum of Art at the Youngstown State University, Youngstown, Ohio for the fall of 2021. Patricia has been active in the Pittsburgh art scene since 1977 as an exhibitor, educator and mentor. In 1996, she was the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts “Pittsburgh Artist of the Year.” Bellan-Gillen is an alumna of Edinboro University of Pennsylvania where she received a B.S. in Art Education in 1973 and a B.F.A. in Printmaking in 1975. She did post-graduate work at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and received an M.F.A. from Carnegie Mellon in 1979.
Somewhere in my brain, personal narrative mixes with fairytales. Historical events intertwine with the imagined and a veil of nostalgia blurs the border between fact and fiction. Archetypal imagery moves about in the temporal lobe with cartoon characters and recent news flashes picked from the Internet join the sagas of black and white television. My drawings and mixed media works use these bits and pieces of visual history…the stones and bones of memory…to suggest a narrative and remix our stories.