Gallery Exhibit Honors Ernest Satchell

  • Friday, February 26, 2010

    PRINCESS ANNE, MD-An exhibit, "Ernest Satchell Retrospective," opens at the Mosely Gallery of Art on Thursday, March 4, showcasing art created from 1971-2010, during the 39 years he spent as a professor of art at UMES.  Satchell is due to retire from the university in April.  An opening reception for the exhibit takes place on Thursday, March 11, from 4-6 p.m. 

    Ernest Satchell, better known to friends and colleagues as Ernie, is a native of Virginia's Eastern Shore, where he received his early education.  During the 1950s, when Satchell was a high school student, art was not yet available in the schools of Northampton County.  He taught himself to draw from comic books and learned to carve and construct by watching his father, who was a carpenter.  Satchell was encouraged to study art by a number of his teachers who had seen his 10th grade biology drawings.         

    Satchell entered Maryland State College (now UMES) in the fall of 1959 to pursue a bachelor's degree in art education.  While there, he studied art with the late Jimmie Mosely, who became his mentor.  During the spring of 1960, Mosely introduced Satchell to the renowned educator and ceramic artist Dr. Kenneth Beittel of Pennsylvania State University.  It was during this six-week period that Satchell realized ceramic art was the discipline closest to his heart.  He became Dr. Beittel's shadow, soaking up everything he could.  Satchell learned the art of inverted stacking and started producing pots that were 30 and 40 inches tall.

    After doing a four-year stint in the U. S. Navy, Satchell worked as an illustrator for the Boeing Aircraft Company in Ridley Park, Pa.  Becoming disillusioned with commercial art, Satchell enrolled in graduate school at Towson State University in 1970 and pursued a master's degree in art education with a concentration in ceramics.  There, under the instruction of Thomas Suspensky, he started to move more toward ceramic sculpture.

    Satchell began his teaching career at UMES in 1971, where he has taught for thirty-nine years.  In 1988, Satchell returned to Towson State University to earn a Master of Fine Arts Degree in ceramics.  Satchell has exhibited extensively over the years with a number of solo and invitational shows to his credit.  He is known for his extensive work in the development of large pottery throwing techniques. 

    "In my figurative work, I often portray common folks in a sincere manner with dignity and pride," said Satchell.  "I go to great lengths to point out inequities in life as exemplified in the Earthscape series.  I view myself as a clay conductor who orchestrates images and presents them in ways that makes life relevant and meaningful to me."

    The show is made possible with the support of the Maryland State Arts Council, the Somerset County Arts Council and the UMES Division of Institutional Advancement.
    The Mosely Gallery is free and open to the public Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Class tours are by appointment.  For more information, call Anke Van Wagenberg, Mosely Gallery director and an instructor of art history at UMES, at 410-651-7770, email gallery@umes.edu or visit www.umes.edu/mosely