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Elizabeth O'Reilly Exhibition at Washington County Museum of Fine Arts


The Washington County Museum of Fine Arts in Hagerstown will present an exhibition of watercolor and oil paintings by Elizabeth O'Reilly of Brooklyn, New York in the Bowman Concert Gallery through August 24, 2003.

The paintings, which O'Reilly painted on location in both Ireland and the United States, allow the viewer a glimpse of history by looking at civilization being reclaimed by nature. The artist explains, "I avoid scenes that are too picturesque or pretty and prefer close-up views of places that are run-down." One of her favorite painting locations in Brooklyn is the industrialized area along the Gowanus canal, an area that has fallen into disuse.

O'Reilly grew up in a family of nine children in West Cork, Ireland and loved to paint the landscapes around her area from an early age. Unable to afford art school, she became involved in a government-subsidized program to train teachers. Graduating in 1978, she taught school in Dublin before moving to the United States with her husband in 1986. After settling in Brooklyn, O'Reilly entered the Brooklyn City College MFA program and graduated in 1992 and began teaching high school and college students.

O'Reilly has exhibited widely throughout the United States and Ireland and has received numerous fellowships and residencies. She currently teaches at the National Academy School of Fine Art and Design in New York City.

The works on view, all completed within the last three years, will include scenes of Ireland such as Ocean Near Downpatrick; Striped Sky over Kilcumin; White Water, Mayo; and Early Spring from Ballinglen. Scenes of New York will include Union Street Bridge; Yellow Pole, Reed Street; Telephone Poles and Hamilton Avenue Bridge. Other works on view will be Ballyroan From Below, Carroll Street Toward 3rd Street, Forsythia and Sycamore, and Yellow Verbascum.


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