School of Visual Arts faculty member opens solo exhibit in New York

September 24, 2020

NEW YORK — “Calling all Gods,” a solo exhibition by Rudy Shepherd, Penn State School of Arts associate professor, is open to the public at LatchKey Gallery in New York City through Oct. 20.

The mixed-media exhibit aims to counter the tragedies, and conflicts, that Shepard said pervade society. Shepherd’s work employs art as a “healing mechanism” creating objects and paintings with the power to heal personal and social ills and to awaken consciousness.

Outlining the gallery, located at 323 Canal Street, are Shepherd’s “Holy Mountain Series,” a collection of paintings honoring mountains from around the world beheld as sacred to various cultures, faiths and traditions.

At the center of the exhibition, a series of “Black Rock Negative Energy Absorbers,” which Shepherd said are used to extract negative energy in the form of prejudice, racism or even quotidian disdain — they help bring harmony to life.

"The idea of the Black Rock Negative Energy Absorber is to make an artwork that offers up a simple spiritual solution to the complicated, scary problems of our world,” Shepherd said.

For the gallery’s Canal Street Window Series, Shepherd created a video that features the character he calls “The Healer” born out of the Black Rock Negative Energy Absorber sculptures. The Healer is a shadowy figure, inhabiting the interstices of good and evil, public and private, seen and unseen, that moves through the landscape barely visible, said Shepherd. Neither fully engaged nor detached, the Healer leads exhibit visitors to contemplate liminal spaces and the idea of negative energy being transmitted throughout the world.

Based in New York, Shepherd earned a bachelor of science degree in biology and studio Art from Wake Forest University and a master of fine arts degree in sculpture from the School of Art Institute of Chicago.

Shepherd has exhibited solo and as a part of a group across the country and internationally. His work is part of numerous private and public collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Studio Museum of Harlem, Museum of Modern Art Library, Whitney Museum of American Art Library, The West Collection, The Chet Callahan & Jacinto Hernandez Collection, The Samantha Senack Collection and The Samatha Cohen Collection.

Last Updated September 24, 2020