Saturday night I took a short break from listening to the commentaries on my DVD set of Series Four of Doctor Who (more on that in a later post) while consuming copious quantities of ramen noodles and occasionally dozing off to attend the gala opening reception for Matt Wyatt's exhibit of artwork from his book How I Spent My Summer Vacation, which you can purchase at the gallery, on display through July 26 at the Ohio Art League gallery in the South Campus Gateway. The book and exhibit consists of drawings taken from the sketchbooks that Matt brings along on his vacation travels throughout the USA and to the islands of the Caribean to record his experiences enlarged and colored with markers (except for one piece done in watercolor pencil).
Apparently, according to Matt, I partly inspired this exhibit. As willing as I usually am to take credit for other people's accomplishments, in this case I have no memory of saying to Matt that he should collect his vacation sketches into a book, though I've no doubt that I most likely did. The idea to accompany the release of the book with a gallery show, however, came from Nix Comics entrepreneur Ken Eppstein, who is credited as "creator" of the exhibit, thus making his absence at Saturday's event somewhat puzzling. (It's unlikely that I missed him, as I arrived fairly early and was there until the end.)
Though Matt has participated in several group shows, including a couple that I've had pieces in as well, "How I Spent My Summer Vacation" is his first solo show, and, as Matt told me Saturday night, it nearly didn't happen. Ken and Matt's original application was turned down by the OAL membership. However, in late May, he received word that there'd been a cancellation, leaving him scrambling to get the exhibit ready for its Friday, July 5th debut.
In the end, everything came together, and although you missed the opportunity to meet and hang out with Matt Wyatt himself, you can still see his artwork and purchase his book at the Ohio Art League Gallery through July 26.