Exhibition: The Four Humors
Saturday, April 27 through Saturday, June 1, 2013
It is time once again for Oxford Gallery's annual theme show. This year’s exhibit takes its theme from the physical theories of the second-century Roman writer Galen. Elaborating upon the philosophy of his ancient Greek predecessor Hippocrates, Galen defined human temperaments as resulting from a preponderance of one of four bodily fluids or “Humors.” As the theory evolved over the centuries, each of the humors became associated with one of the four elements comprising the universe: Earth, Air, Water, and Fire. The Humors remained a popular medical belief into the nineteenth century and underlay such now seemingly aberrant practices as ‘bleeding’ a patient to restore the balance of bodily fluids. The following chart attempts a brief summary of the theory of Humors.
||sociable, hopeful, enthusiastic
||ambitious, aggressive, irascible
||thoughtful, brooding introspective,
||impassive, slow, complacent
The mood or temperament communicated by a work of art may be a function of style, subject matter, color, or just about any aspect of the work. Sharp angles or saturated, primary colors, for example, may convey a “choleric” temperament, while smooth curves and soft, secondary or tertiary colors may connote a “melancholic” temperament. Similarly, light upward forms might suggest a “sanguine” temperament, while heavy, downward forms a “phlegmatic” temperament. In The Four Humors, each of nearly fifty participating artists will attempt to convey a temperament or mood associated with one or more of the Humors.
A reception for the artists will be held on Saturday, May 4 from 5:30 to 8:00 PM.
It is open to the public.
Jappie King Black
Mary Ellen Davis
Phyllis Bryce Ely
Cynthia Beth Rubin
Jean K. Stephens
Jan Hewitt Towsley
Janet Thayer Williams
Location and Hours
The Oxford Gallery is located in the Roosevelt Apartment Building at the corner of Oxford Street and Park Avenue in Rochester.
Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday, noon to 5:00pm, and Saturday, 10:00am-5:00pm. Admission to all events at the Oxford Gallery is free. For information, please call 585-271-5885.
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