The Fine Art of Michael McFarland

About the Artist

Michael McFarland

Michael McFarland was born and raised in central Pennsylvania and continues to live and paint there today. His paintings are inspired by a love of the outdoors and the new ideas which develop over the course of frequent hiking and kayaking trips throughout Pennsylvania, West Virginia and the surrounding region. The goal of his work is to go beyond the simple construction of appealing landscapes or records of travel encounters, with each painting offering another, far more subtle level of meaning. Michael’s paintings utilize elements which explore the emotions and issues which we all encounter in our lives … love, joy, fear, anticipation, disappointment, regret, change, hope, and renewal. The images are derived from a combination of sketches from life, reference photos, memory, and imagination.


Even casual observers notice that Michael’s watercolors are far from typical in style and appearance, an intentional effect which results from pushing the medium by adding large amounts of pigment to create strong darks. Many of the paintings portray scenes of night and fading light, a fascinating time of day that often ads a certain element of mystery and melancholy. Of course, liberties must be taken with the light when painting subjects in this manner.

Michael sees the natural world as an active entity which is constantly changing and renewing itself. While it may seem quiet and beautiful at times, it is also a world of uncertainty and underlying danger. He enjoys showing the haunting and somewhat lonely side of nature viewed through the cycles of day and night, the changing seasons, and life and death. The subjects symbolize the contrasts between safety and vulnerability, love and loss, and the disappointment of missed opportunities versus the promise of those yet to come.


Biography


1972
Born in Lewistown, Pennsylvania.
1995
BFA, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania
1996Artist in Residency in Printmaking, Kutztown University of Pennsylvania


Group Exhibitions


2006
Art Association of Harrisburg, Harrisburg, PA, “Four Artist Invitational Exhibition”
Jumpstreet, Harrisburg, PA, “ARTiculture Trees: Planting the Seeds of Creativity”

2000
Louie’s, Baltimore, MD

1998
Mill River Gallery, Ellicott City, MD, “Landscape: The Tradition and Beyond”
Art Association of Harrisburg, Harrisburg, PA, “Four Artist Invitational Exhibition”

1995
Dixon University Center, Harrisburg, PA, “The Presidents’ Choices: Art from the Universities”


Selected Juried Exhibitions and Awards


2013
Aqueous Open 2013: Pittsburgh Watercolor Society 72nd Annual International Exhibition
Carnegie, PA

Lebanon Valley College 42nd Annual Juried Exhibition
Annville, PA
Fourth Place

2011

The 30th Annual Adirondacks National Exhibition of American Watercolors
Old Forge, NY

Art of the State: Pennsylvania 2011
Harrisburg, PA
The State Museum Purchase Award

Georgia Watercolor Society 2011 National Exhibition
Carrollton, GA

Art Alliance of Central PA Annual Juried Exhibition
Lemont, PA
First Place

Lebanon Valley College 40th Annual Juried Exhibition
Annville, PA
Fourth Place

2010

Baltimore Watercolor Society
Mid-Atlantic Regional Watercolor Exhibition
North Bethesda, MD
Winsor and Newton Award

2008
Solo Exhibition
“Recent Watercolors and Pastels by Michael McFarland”
Rehoboth Art League
Rehoboth Beach, DE

Arts in Harmony '08
Elk River, MN
Honorable Mention

2007
Baltimore Watercolor Society Mid-Atlantic Regional Watercolor Exhibition
North Bethesda, MD

Northern Colorado Artist Association 16th National Art Exhibition and Sale
Fort Collins, CO
Irving Shapiro Memorial Watercolor Award

Arts in Harmony ’07
Elk River, MN
Award for Best Nature Representation, Purchase Award

Mid America Pastel Society’s 2007 National Pastel Exhibition
St. Joseph, MO

Keystone National 2007 Juried Watermedia Exhibition
Mechanicsburg, PA

Maryland Pastel Society “Shades of Pastel” National Juried Show
North Bethesda, MD

2006
Pennsylvania Watercolor Society 27th Annual International Exhibition
Scranton, PA

Aqueous Open 2006: Pittsburgh Watercolor Society 60th Annual International Exhibition
Sewickley, PA

Art Center School and Galleries Regional Juried Exhibition
Mechanicsburg, PA
Sakura of America and Dakota Art Pastels Award

Yorkfest Juried Exhibition
York, PA

Art Alliance of Central Pennsylvania 2006 Juried Show
Lamont, PA
First Place

York Art Association 36th Annual Open Juried Exhibit
York, PA

2005
Pennsylvania Watercolor Society 26h Annual International Exhibition
Loretto, PA

Baltimore Watercolor Society 2005 Mid-Atlantic Regional Watercolor Exhibition
North Bethesda, MD

Images 2005
State College, PA
Award of Merit

2004
Art of the State: Pennsylvania 2004
Harrisburg, PA
Second Place, Works on Paper

Pennsylvania Watercolor Society 25th Annual International Exhibition
New Castle, PA

Lebanon Valley College 33rd Annual Juried Exhibition
Annville, PA

Images 2004
State College, PA

Susquehanna Art Society 14th Biennial Regional Art Exhibit
Selinsgrove, PA

Small Works
York, PA

2003
Lebanon Valley College 32nd Annual Juried Exhibition
Annville, PA

York Art Association 33rd Annual Open Juried Exhibit
York, PA
Second Place, Watercolor; Third Place, Pastel

Images 2003
State College, PA
Gold Sable Award for Excellence in Watercolor

2002
Miniature Art 2002
Chambersburg, PA
Merit Award

Images 2002
State College, PA

2001
Aqueous Open: Pittsburgh Watercolor Society 55th Annual International Exhibition
Pittsburgh, PA

Images 2001
State College, PA
Honorable Mention

1999
The Festival at Little Buffalo Juried Exhibition
Harrisburg, PA
Second Place

Bald Eagle Art League Regional Art Exhibition
Williamsport, PA
Kalish Finest Brushes Award

1998
The Festival at Little Buffalo Juried Exhibition
Harrisburg, PA
Best of Show, Purchase Award

Riverwalk Arts Festival Juried Exhibition
York, PA

1997
Images ’97
State College, PA
Gold Sable Award for Excellence in Watercolor

1996
Art Association of Harrisburg 68th Annual Juried Exhibition
Harrisburg, PA
Second Place, Watercolor

Images ’96
State College, PA
Gold Sable Award for Excellence in Watercolor

Riverwalk Arts Festival Juried Exhibition
York, PA
Best of Show

1995
Evan Summer Award for Outstanding Achievement in Printmaking
Kutztown University of Pennsylvania


Memberships


Baltimore Watercolor Society, Signature Member

Pennsylvania Watercolor Society, Signature Member

Art Association of Harrisburg

Perry County Council of the Arts


Collections


Kutztown University of Pennsylvania, Kutztown, PA

Perry County Council of the Arts, Newport, PA

Sherburne County Government Center, Elk River, MN

The State Museum of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg, PA

Numerous private collections


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