‘Corpus,’ a collection of medical illustrations, opens at the Doris

Published: Saturday, January 21, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 20, 2012 at 6:44 p.m.

As children played music on the piano in the front gallery, teenagers studied illustration in the back room and a professional artist quietly painted in her studio — just a typical day at the Doris Bardon Community Cultural Center.


“Big Dancer,” by Michael Kemp, ink on paper, is part of “Corpus: The Body in Art,” an exhibit at the Doris Bardon Community Cultural Center. (Courtesy photo)


If you go

What: “Corpus: The Body in Art,” an exhibit of illustrations, drawings and paintings by 19 artists
When: Opens Friday through Feb. 24. Hours: 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, noon-5 p.m. Sundays
Where: Doris Bardon Community Cultural Center, 716 N. Main Street, Gainesville
Admission: Free

And that’s exactly how the center’s namesake would have wanted it, said Sue Johnson, the vice president of the Doris’ board of directors.

“Doris wanted a place where artists could meet and network, collaborate and be inspired,” Johnson said. “And Gainesville so desperately needed a culture center where that could happen.”

Collaboration is at the heart of the Doris’ next exhibit, “Corpus,” a collection of vintage medical illustrations, drawings and paintings — both realistic and abstract — of the human body. The work is by 19 artists, most of whom are Floridians.

The exhibit, which opens Friday, is sponsored by the University of Florida College of Medicine, Department of Neurosurgery.

Art and medicine overlap when it comes to the study of the human body, said Anne Gilroy, the exhibit’s curator.

“The medical arts and the visual arts share the same visual language,” she said.

When Doris Bardon, a life-long patron of the arts, passed away in 2006, she left a trust to the Arts Association of Alachua County, Johnson said. The group teamed up with the Gainesville Fine Arts Association, and in October, the Doris opened its doors.

The center also has space for local artists to work, including studios for five artists-in-residence, professional artists who help manage the Doris in exchange for private studio space.

Classes are offered for children and adults in painting, illustration, ceramics, printmaking and journaling, with plans to include classes in music, theater and dance, said Johnson.

The Doris is staffed entirely by volunteers, said Chuck Sapp, the interim director of the Doris.

“It’s by the community and for the community,” he said.

The Doris’ mission, said Ande Lister, president of the center’s board of directors, is to bring art to everyone.

Both professional artists and novices are welcome to learn and create in the space, as are people of all ages and backgrounds, Johnson said.

“This place reaches across so many boundaries,” she said. “And that’s huge. As a society we try to build boundaries between ourselves and people who are unlike us, and those simply don’t exist here.”

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