Jessie Wilber Gallery
The Blind Men and the Elephant
By Stephen Glueckert
Stephen Glueckert has spent his life sharing his passion for the arts. A born and raised Montanan, he sees art as more than a drawing taped to the fridge or a gallery-hung masterpiece. To Glueckert, art is a language. One we can all learn and meaningfully apply to our lives. He has dedicated his professional time to caretaking this idea in various forms. He worked at the Northwest Children’s Home as a counselor and teacher, a professor at the University of Montana, University of Papua New Guinea and throughout the Pacific Northwest, a Curator Emeritus for the Missoula Art Museum, a writer, advocate and fellow as well as a dedicated pursuer of his own creative practice.
The Blind Men and the Elephant series also presents a whimsical narrative and historical elements. 20 black and white drawings in pastel, Keno crayon and cattle marker tell the story of six blind men’s attempt to understand what an elephant is. The drawing medium is a recent exploration that Glueckert is working to refine and keeping the look and feel of the surface of each piece consistent is extremely important to him. The use of black and white seemed natural since the core of the tale is the metaphor of blindness, contrasting light and dark and the state of the seen and unseen.
Glueckert’s connection to this tale may lie in its relevance. Through time and vastly differing cultures it’s message is one we can all take lessons from, even today. “While many versions have a specific theological reference, I believe the tale has broader lessons that transcends the depictions of simply a theological debate and promotes listening, patience and humility. The story contrasts the ideas of what we can actually grasp as real through evidence, with what we might perceive in our mind’s eye as truth, and in the end how utterly wrong everyone can be” – Stephen Glueckert.
Free and open to the public.
September 9, 2016, 5:00 – 8:00 PM during the Downtown Bozeman Art Walk