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Gallery Artists: William E. Shumway

      513 NW 18th St
      Corvallis, OR 97330
      541-758-5087 Home
      541-757-0042 Work
      Mixed Media

Bill Shumway was born in Amherst, Massachusettes. He earned a masters degree in painting at the University of Massachusettes in 1968. During his graduate years he taught drawing and painting classes and was the assistant to the director for the institution's art aquisition program. Prior to making his home in Corvallis in 1976, he operated frame studios and galleries in Amherst, Northampton, and Martha's Vineyard, MA. Although he thinks of himself primarily as a painter, he has also been a sign painter, a house painter, a remodeler, a day care worker, a graphic artist, an art teacher, an artist's model, a framer and helped start the recycling program at Corvallis Disposal Co. through Source Recycling. Since 1981 Bill has been with Pegasus Frame Studio & Gallery, first as an archival picture framer and curator, and then as its owner.

He has been actively engaged in the Corvallis arts community since his arrival, by promoting regional artists and bringing international artworks to the community at Pegasus Gallery. He has helped promote the display of artwork at local business sites and worked with local schools to keep art education alive, especially since the onset of Proposition 5. In the mid eighties Bill was one of the organizers of the on going Vistas & Vineyards en plein air group and was one of its facilitators through most of the nineties. He has co-chaired the Chocolate Fantasy art procurement committee since the fall of 2001. It is an annual fundraiser for the Corvallis Art Center, now known as Art Centric. As an extension of that project, Bill has helped in the production of the 2001 and 2002 Art Directories.

Since the mid eighties Shumway has taught art in a variety of venues. Most recently, he joined fellow teachers: Mark Allison and Annette Orrock for a workshop in Sisters, OR. They taught a group of students how to paint water as a subject, along the banks of the Metollious River and at Clear Lake. He has also taught children's painting classes at the Corvallis Art Center, art therapy workshops with therapist, Peg Mayo and dream painting classes at the Benton Center in Corvallis.

Bill has exhibited in several galleries and competition shows in the Northeast and the Northwest. His work is currently on display at Pegasus Gallery and the Blue Dome Gallery in Silver City, NM. Both galleries have on line gallery sites in which his work is displayed.

Bill works primarily in acrylic and interference pigments, transparent glass impregnated acrylics which refract separate prism colors. He started using these materials to depict the kinds of light he saw in his dreams and meditations, in which the light often emanates from the subject rather than simply from some external source. Later, he used them to depict the rapidly shifting light of his desert and aerial en plein air paintings. Now he employs them in almost all of his acrylic works. Bill enjoys experimenting with all kinds of media, however, including sculpture, drawing, and painting with heated copy toner and teas and he still works with oils, watercolor, and printmaking at times.

It is difficult to categorize his artwork stylistically or subjectively. He works in a broad range. Bill was weaned on abstract expressionism in the sixties but his training was rather traditional, with an emphasis on drawing. The images, therefore, tend to move back and forth from abstract to expressively representational. Most of what motivates him in developing an image is a response to the subject at hand. His subjects include landscapes, conventional, aerial and meditative dreamscapes. He does potraitures of people and animals. Crows have dominated his landscape most recently. Responses to poetry have occupied lots of his attention in the last few years. Sometimes he's simply curious about how to look more closely, to render. Usually he works serially, searching for more content, allowing the subject and the painting to speak for themselves.