TAMIU Professor Depicts Myth and Reality in 2004 SA Art Exhibit

TAMIU Professor Depicts Myth and Reality in SA Art Exhibit

Janet Eager Krueger, Texas A&M International University associate professor of art, is a representational artist, meaning what she paints is identifiable, a representation of the world around us.

In her work, a truck is clearly a truck, and scenes depict moments if not real, then at least plausible. But in her exhibit "Nuevo Mythology: Contemporary Parables from South Texas," at the Hunt Gallery in San Antonio through Saturday, August 7, Krueger invites the viewer to peer beneath the painting's surface to the underlying mystery and symbolism of everyday moments.

"My definition of 'everyday life' comes from the dictionary of Deep South Texas," explained Krueger, "Life on the border is a merging of extremes: a strange brew of rural and urban, the very rich and the very poor. The hybrid vigor resulting from these contradictions is the starting point of my imagery."

Her current show takes these moments and uses them to explore the mythology of the modern. In Atalanta As A Child, (photo) a girl no more than seven holds the collar of her hunting dog in one hand, an archer's bow in the other, while the carcass of a boar bleeds behind her on the pick up truck bed. Not a rare sight during hunting season in South Texas, until one notices the golden crown on the self-assured redhead.

Krueger explains Atalanta is a figure from Greek mythology who wounded the giant Calydonian boar, besting other famous warriors such as Jason of the Golden Fleece.

"It is a 'prequel'," said Krueger, "the young huntress in her formative period, sanguine and at ease with violent death."

Other paintings emulate 16th Century Flemish master Pieter Bruegel, who used his paintings to depict everyday events while including mythological and allegorical images, including references to Flemish proverbs.

"The significance of some of these proverbs is now lost, but the images still manage to convey a sense of their instructive intent. If one looks closely, life has something to teach us. That a narrative exists in my work is evident, but the meaning of the narrative is less than transparent, much as the meaning in many of Bruegel's paintings is opaque," said Krueger.

An artist's reception will be held at the Gallery from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 8. For more information about the show, please contact the Hunt Gallery at 210.822.6527, or visit 4225 McCullough Ave, San Antonio.

For more information about Krueger or art at TAMIU, please contact the College of Arts and Sciences at 326.2460 or visit offices in the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, room 429. University office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu