Monday, July 20, 2009

The Seen Gallery Welcomes Artist Michael Whelan to Repertoire

Opening Night Reception on Saturday, September 5 from 7 to 10 p.m.

The Seen Gallery will proudly welcome the renowned artist Michael Whelan to its diverse family of artists, with an opening night reception on September 5, from 7-10 p.m. Whelan’s paintings may be best defined as “visionary art” in that they transcend the physical world as we know it and offer us glimpses into spaces that we may only experience in our dreams, evoking an immediate emotional response. With rich symbolism throughout his work, the attention that Whelan pays to detail gives a fresh, awe-inspiring perspective each time a painting is viewed.

“The sublimity Michael Whelan creates in his paintings reminds me of why I am a purveyor of fine art—to share it with those individuals who want to enhance their lives and transcend to a higher order of being. That’s what looking into his work brings to mind—new worlds that enhance one’s sensibilities,” says Amy Bradford, Co-owner of The Seen Gallery.

Whelan grew up in the Western US as his father, an aerospace engineer, moved from one research facility to another. During high school, he took summer classes at Denver's Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, but entered San Jose State University as a Pre-Med Biology Major. While there he worked in the Anatomy and Physiology Department, gaining first-hand knowledge of human anatomy, but he continued to study art and some of his medical drawings appeared in The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. He eventually changed his major and graduated as a President's Scholar with a BA in Painting. Whelan then studied briefly at the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles, but moved to the New York area after he began receiving offers for book cover assignments. Michael Whelan went on to become a preeminent illustrator and the most awarded cover artist in the science fiction and fantasy field. Winner of an unprecedented 15 Hugo Awards (Science Fiction's Oscar), this month Whelan will join Jules Verne, Mary Shelley, Steven Spielberg, Ray Bradbury and only 50 other SF Luminaries when he is inducted as the first living artist into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame.

These days Michael Whelan devotes his time to his personal fine art work. His original paintings have been displayed and sold at galleries and museums throughout the United States and around the world. He paints both in acrylic and oil, with some sketches in charcoal, pen and ink, or pencil. He has had 4 art books published, among them “The Art of Michael Whelan”, a deluxe 208 page collection of Whelan art published by Bantam Books. He is a member of the Graphic Artists Guild and the Society of Illustrators in New York City, and he is an Advisor to the Masters in Fine Arts program at Western Connecticut State University near his home in Connecticut. The Seen Gallery is excited to introduce Michael Whelan to their collectors and the Atlanta community.

A multi-discipline art gallery that features established and mid-career artists, The Seen Gallery was founded by photographer Bill Bibb in October 2002. Painter Amy Bradford joined Bill as co-owner and curator in 2005; and, after six years of success at its original location in the Oakhurst Village, the two moved The Seen Gallery to a larger street front location by Decatur Square – an ideal area for sidewalk strolling and window-shopping. The new 1,700 square foot gallery is now conveniently located at 415 Church Street. New exhibitions will open every four to five weeks, creating a fresh, dynamic experience for each visit to the gallery. Visit The Seen Gallery online at
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