Private collections have for centuries played an essential role in the history of art, yet many such collections remain out of view of the general public. Sonoma State University is fortunate that Sonoma County residents Fay Gallus and Dr. Richard Sweet, whose collection is the subject of "Focus on Photography: Selections from the Gallus Sweet Collection," have generously agreed to share 59 photographs with the University Art Gallery and its visitors. The exhibit runs September 3 through October 25.
The selection of photographs in the exhibition is at once thought provoking, captivating and comprehensive. They span much of the history of photography, from Carleton Watkins' lyrical 1883 image "Multnomah Falls in Oregon" to Annie Leibovitz's powerful rendering of Niagara Falls in Canada. The exhibition also presents the work of some of photography's most important artists, including Ansel Adams, Eugene Atget, Edward Burtynsky, Imogen Cunningham, Robert Mapplethorpe, Tina Modotti, Eadweard Muybridge and Carrie Mae Weems, among many others.
Since 1978, the University Art Gallery has been a central part of Sonoma County's growing visual arts community. The gallery's mission is to serve as a source of educational and cultural enrichment for the campus and surrounding communities through exhibitions, programs and publications that promote the understanding and appreciation of modern and contemporary visual art from throughout the United States and beyond.
The exhibit opens with a reception in in the gallery on September 3, 5-7 p.m. A special event, "The Collector and the Gallerist: A Conversation with Richard Sweet and Martin Weinstein," takes place October 22, 7-9 pm. The University Art Gallery is open Tuesday-Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; weekends, noon to 4 p.m. Admission is free, parking on campus is $5-$8. For more information, call (707) 664-2295.