E-town art professor holds ‘retrospective’ show
Since his earliest linoleum-cut print in first grade, Milt Friedly has followed a mantra that we are “made to be creative.”
Friedly, a professor of art at Elizabethtown College, celebrates his 30th year of teaching this year. He arrived at E-town in 1987 and was tasked with helping create a “small art department.” Student art shows didn’t begin until 1988, he said, adding that this will be the third show at E-town for his own work.
“In Retrospect Part One” takes place in the Hess Gallery of Zug Memorial Hall beginning April 27. The show features some of the professor’s older work, as well as new pieces from the summer and fall of 2017.
Friedly said his pieces all come from personal experiences, including dreams, visions and current events. One recent piece is a print featuring Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un. Another is based on Muhammad Ali, whom Friedly recalls watching on television as a child. Several pieces are dedicated to his mother, some of which depict his parents’ farm.
You can’t give all your time away; you won’t have anything left.”
Though he is a self-described generalist when it comes to artwork, printmaking and bronze sculpting are his two favorite mediums,. According the professor, it is best to try one’s hand at a variety of styles. “Art is about ideas,” Friedly said. “You have to find the best media that fits your concept.”
Friedly said he tries to have his own projects going on while teaching. This is especially the case for his bronze work, since E-town’s bronze furnace allows a certain number of molds at a time. “I like to always have something going on as an example for the students,” he said.
When he has an art show, Friedly said, he discusses his pieces with his classes. However, the artist noted that he doesn’t want his students to “over-think or over-talk” art in an effort to get the message right.
“Sometimes we already know the answer.”
While he dedicates several hours each day to teaching, Friedly said he recognizes that his own art is equally as important. “You can’t give all your time away; you won’t have anything left.”
Friedly’s exhibit will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, as well as 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday April 27 to May 27. A reception is scheduled for 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 2. The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.