Belknap and Covi Galleries, Allen R. Hite Art Institute

University of Louisville

Louisville, KY



Siegfried R. Weng: Prints and Drawings


It is an honor to present this exhibition of selected prints, drawings, and notecards by artist and retired museum director Siegfried R. Weng, of Newburgh, Indiana, and we are grateful to Carolyn and Siegfried Weng and the Dayton Art Institute for the loan of the exhibition. (left: Two Toucans, 1937)

Born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, on May 20, 1904, Mr. Weng studied at Oshkosh State Teachers College, the Art Institute of Chicago , the University of Chicago, where he earned B.A. and M.A. degrees, and the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University. In 1928 he was Lecture Assistant to the noted American sculptor, Lorado Taft, in Chicago; from 1929 to 1950 he was Director of the Dayton Art Institute (Museum and School), and from 1950 to 1968 he directed the Evansville Museum of Arts and Science. In his capacity as a Museum Director, he oversaw the planning and construction of new museum buildings at both places, expanded the art collections of both, and developed museum programs and exhibitions appropriate to each.

As an artist, Mr. Weng exhibited most recently at the Dunn Memorial Gallery, Oakland City University, where he had retrospective of prints and drawings dating from 1928 to 1998 (June 6-25, 1999) and an exhibition of prints and drawings, as well as 158 designs for notecards reproduced from his prints and drawings, at the Dayton Art Institute (December 17, 1999-March 12, 2000). Mr. Weng is the recipient of an Honorary Doctor of Humanities Degree from the University of Evansville (1960), and in 1985 he received the Evansville Mayor's Award for "more than thirty years of inspiring leadership and counsel." He is listed in the 1966 Who's in American Art as a member of the American Federation of Arts, American Association of Museums, and Midwest Museum Association, of which he was Vice President for Indiana in 1954-55 and President in 1948. He is married to Carolyn Williams Browning Weng, also an artist and an educator, who started the gallery program at Oakland City University. (left: Demoiselle Cranes, 1937)

As an artist, Mr. Weng from early in his career was attracted to relief printing, woodcuts (the earliest form of printmaking) and linoleum cuts. And he has been especially drawn to nature subjects - birds, animals and plants - an interest which was at least partly stimulated by his parents' deep appreciation of nature. In his later years he also explored with enthusiasm the creation of abstract images. (left: Wood Duck, 1941)

This selection of his work ranges from linoleum prints of 1928 to drawings dating from 1945 to 1996, some in ink on paper and others, beginning in 1954, in ink and crayon on paper. Mr. Weng himself, in a statement prepared for the Oakland City University exhibition in 1999, explains how he came to take up the use of crayons. When at a certain point in his life he could no longer carve blocks or make precise detailed drawings, he writes, "I turned to non-objective compositions as a new challenge where I could use a ruler and ink markers for drawing the forms, and then fill them in with layers of Crayola crayons, a dry more controllable medium." In these, he states, he endeavored "to apply the same basic principles fundamental in all art: balanced compositions, varied size and form, and well related colors."

Dario A. Covi

Curator of Exhibition

(I wish to thank Carolyn Weng for providing essential biographical information about Mr. Weng and selecting the works for exhibition.)

Read more about the Belknap and Covi Galleries, Allen R. Hite Art Institute, University of Louisville in Resource Library Magazine

Please click on thumbnail images bordered by a red line to see enlargements.

For further biographical information please see America's Distinguished Artists, a national registry of historic artists.

This page was originally published in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information. rev. 3/23/11

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