Artist and professor Hall Groat II sells art at benefit
By: Linda Salomons
|Hall Groat II
The community has been invited to attend the Midsummer Art Show and Sale on Tuesday, July 15, from 7:30-9:30 pm, at Remlick’s Grille in the Kilmer Building, 31 Lewis St., Binghamton. The event will include live jazz and light refreshments. A cash bar will be available.
The event, co-sponsored by Hall Groat II, professor and chairman of the SUNY Broome Art Department and Remlik’s, is a fund-raiser to benefit the Binghamton Jewish Community Center and Hillel Academy. Twenty-percent of all sales, both at the show and online, will benefit the two organizations. The JCC and Hillel Academy provide education, programs and services for children and the community-at-large.
At SUNY Broome, Groat teaches foundation courses in painting, drawing and computer graphics. Groat earned a master of fine arts degree in painting and drawing from City University of New York at Brooklyn, a bachelor of arts in art history and a minor in studio art at Binghamton University. He also attended graduate and certificate programs at Buffalo State College, Syracuse University and Savannah College of Art and Design, as well as summer sessions at Chautauqua School of Art, Chautauqua, NY, and Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, VT.
“As a child I explored the world through collage, and was fascinated with how geometric shapes of paper could be assembled into abstract configurations,” explained Groat. “The compositions were simple at first, however later took on a sense of depth and richness as other materials were added to obscure forms. The collages often ended up looking quite mystical, which may have been a result of countless hours spent out-of-doors, and my fascination with the changes that took place in nature over time and distance. Now as a perceptual painter, I find that my strongest work emerges when elements from these formative years mesh with the present, resulting in art that may pose more questions than provide answers.”
Groat has had numerous one-person exhibitions, which include Everson Museum, Roberson Museum, Cazenovia College, Jasper Rand Art Museum, Le Moyne College, Wadsworth Athenaeum Museum, Washington and Jefferson College, along with participating in dozens of group shows throughout the United States.
In 2004 ,Groat was included in the Roberson Museum Center’s exhibition “The Cosmos and Chaos: a Cultural Paradox” with artists Lucian Freud, Eric Fischl, Jerome Witkin and several other contemporary artists. His work is included in private and public collections internationally, including Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones; Clear Channel Communications; Bristol-Myers Squibb; Cellular One; House and Garden, LTD.; Sheraton Hotel Corporation; Binghamton University; Everson Museum of Art; Munson-Williams Proctor Institute of Art; The State University of New York system; Roberson Museum and Science Center; and Washington Jefferson College.
“This summer I’ve been working with quite a few art students around the globe through my online educational platform,” said Groat. “It’s remarkable how many artists reside within regions that do not have access to classical painting education. We are very lucky to have such wonderful schools here in the Greater Binghamton Community.”
Groat has students from around the world, including China, Japan, Dubai, Australia, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Europe and New Zealand. “Since 2006, I’ve produced 27 instructional oil painting DVDs and have sold just over 25,000 of them to-date. The most successful form of communicating to the world about this service has been my YouTube station (www.youtube.com/user/traditionalart) which includes more than 100 clips,” said Groat.
“I have found that the DVD oil painting demonstrations have really fulfilled a need internationally for people that want to learn how to classically oil paint, but do not have access to community classes or local universities,” he said. “It’s hard to believe, but there are millions of people around the globe that reside in marginalized regions, and just don’t have the educational opportunities that we often take for granted. Throughout the past few years, I’ve also been finding here in the states that there has been a decline in classical art education in many areas, and the DVDs have really satisfied a need, especially with adult students between the ages of 30-90.”
Groat contacted the JCC and Hillel Academy with the idea of a collaborative event. “I have been a life-long educator, from teaching tennis at age 14 to my current role of professor/chairman at SUNY Broome, so I want to support good schools, especially small private ones, who strive for a quality education,” he said.
“The only thing I’ve been doing longer than teaching is making art – my father is a renowned artist in the Syracuse area and my wife jokes that I was born with a paintbrush in my hand – but I have been making art since the age of 2 and I paint almost daily,” said Groat. “My style is a ‘painterly realism,’ devoid of the rigid formality of realism often displayed today, which projects a romantic emotion. My primary subjects include portraits, landscapes, city scenes, still lifes, desserts, cocktail glasses, flowers and narrative paintings, taking a classical approach to modern subjects. After selling more than 1,500 original oil paintings worldwide, I recently made my collection of work – both available and sold original paintings – available in the form of giclée canvas prints,” he added.
Groat currently has an exhibition at The Gallery, 5 Riverside Dr., Binghamton. It includes 23 original framed oil paintings and will be on display there until Wednesday, September 3. He has offered 20 percent of sales from this show as well toward the JCC and Hillel Academy fund-raiser.
Groat’s show “Just Desserts” is on display now at Remlick’s Grille. At the event on July 15, he will include a variety of other pieces for viewing and for sale, including pop culture dessert and candy still lifes, classical landscapes based on Central New York Finger Lakes Wine Country and Ring of Kerry Ireland, along with New York City cityscapes.
View and purchase on-line
A large selection of gicleé canvas prints are available online, and may be purchased directly from Groat’s website at: http://hallgroat.com/prints/. When ordering online, write “Midsummer Art” in the E-shop notes section during check-out, so credit is given for the fund-raiser.