Joe McGee Art

Welcome to Joe McGee Art

Below: 2 new works, 8-2019, 40"x30"
August, 2019, New Flower and Still Life Works! For more flowers look on For the Children of Flowers page. :)
July, 2019: New series begins, Sailing Vessels. The 3 works below are all 30"x24", acrylic on canvas. I have been interested in boats/rigging since a child. Here, I invent scenes, having never been on the ocean.
December, 2018, Thomas Merton has ended! Thanks so much to All involved!
Wow, what a Blast!
Penny Sisto and I held our Opening Reception Friday, Nov. 30th. It was packed, so many spoke of Merton, of our art. Poet Lynnell Edwards had the crowd spellbound as she read midway 2 Merton poem's, one she wrote, one by him.

Beautiful Experience!

We hope you get a chance to see the show, it is up all of December, McGrath Gallery, off Norris Ave. at back of Bellarmine University campus, handicap restrooms right beside gallery, open weekends, in another week parking becomes very easy when semester ends. Come by, and walk down a bit to the Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine (the Merton Center was host for this exhibit, thanks Paul and Mark!) in the University Library.
Happy News: 5-19-2018
      I am so pleased to announce that I will be doing a 2 person exhibit on Thomas Merton with the fabulous fiber artist Penny Sisto at Bellarmine University's McGrath Gallery, in conjunction with The Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University. The exhibit is titled Searching for Thomas Merton: An Artistic Tribute, 1098-2018.

And More Happy News: 9-2018
Noted author/poet, Lynnell Edwards, will do a reading of poetry at the reception on Nov. 30th. Of course, Merton was an outstanding poet! Lynnell's addition to the exhibit will honor this vital part of Merton's being. Penny, all the folks at the Merton Center at Bellarmine University and I can't be happier about this late addition

Lynnell Edwards

Lynnell Edwards

Author's Website

Lynnell Major Edwards is the author of three full-length collections of poetry, The Farmer's Daughter (2003), The Highwayman's Wife (2007), and Covet (2011) all from Red Hen Press. Most recently her chapbook Kings of the Rock and Roll Hot Shop was released by Accents Publishing (2014). Her work has appeared on Verse Daily and in numerous literary journals, including Poems & Plays, Southern Poetry Review, Smartish Pace, The Los Angeles Review, Kestrel, and River Styx. She is a regular reviewer for Pleiades, Rain Taxi, and American Book Review and her short fiction has been published in literary journals such as New Madrid and the Connecticut Review. She lives in Louisville, Kentucky, where she is Associate Professor of English at Spalding University. She received her doctorate in English at the University of Louisville, her undergraduate degree at Centre College in Kentucky, and is the recipient of a 2007 Al Smith Fellowship from the Kentucky Arts Council. She is also associate director of Louisville Literary Arts. a non-profit literary arts organization which sponsors the monthly InKY reading series in Louisville, Ky and The Writer's Block Festival.

       Our exhibit at Bellarmine will be part of the larger Merton Celebration here in Louisville this Fall/Winter. The Living Legacy of Thomas Merton, which has now opened at KyCAD (The Kentucky College of Art and Design) is a fascinating grouping of 14 artist/writer/poets.
Both invites below:
Or visit for a full listing of Merton events here in Louisville:
Thomas Merton Works + Next Page
Fall of 2018 into Jan., 2019, Will Keep Posted
Merton died tragically in Thailand on Dec. 10, 1968. I have been immersed in his writing now for 3 years. Such an important figure, an incredible mind!

Top: Merton holds a mock burial for John Paul at Gethsemani: 2018, 6'x4', acrylic on canvas

2nd above: Monk in Burial Shroud, collage, tape, acrylic on canvas, 19"x9""

3rd above: Mother Catherine Spalding Welcomes the Peace Bird, 18"x12", 2018

4th above: Merton at His Ordination, April, 2018, 30"x24", acrylic on canvas

5th image above:: Merton beside his hermitage at Gethsemani Abbey, 30"x60", now part of the collection of The Merton Center at Bellarmine University, Louisville, KY.

A Very Cool Collaboration with Fiber Artist Penny Sisto for the Fall 2018 Merton Fest!

Penny Sisto has made a beautiful, mirror image textile work of my painting below. The 2 works will make up the wings of a planned altar piece that will honor Thomas Merton. Penny, such a gifted artist! Wow!

January 17, 2018, a new work, 48"x30", acrylic on canvas. Inspired by Thomas Merton, the Mother Figure hears of his passing on Dec. 10,1968

Next: Penny has just finished here textile, working off of my painting, her work will form the left panel of the altar, my painting the right

3rd. The completed work installed at KyCAD
New 6-2019,
Regarding all
Hagan McGee Art

Note: My brother David now has dad's entire collection that he left us!

Stay tuned for contact info after collection archived properly

My site also has 2 pages on the KY Folk Art of my father, Hagan McGee
James Hagan McGee, b.1927, d. Dec. 19, 2017           
We are sad to loose our dad, artist Hagan McGee passed away Dec. 19, 2017, just past the age of 90. Such a good father, he is in heaven now!

Below: Dad at Galerie Hertz, 2010 or so, in front of some of his Folk sculpture he was showing there.

Next: Woman with Chickens, 2000s, 11"x14"

Now, Back to Joe McGee Work,
Merton Continued.

Below: The Transformation of Thomas Merton, mixed media on wood, 1994-2017, 4'x30"

2nd: Detail of The Transformation of Thomas Merton
Here I am, the Happy Artist!
Below: At Bernheim Forest, KY, 2017, photo by my daughter Tasha, a beautiful day there, here I stand in front of the Sky Bridge!

2018: New Merton Stuff

Below:  New painting Merton thinks of the death of his brother John Paul, who died in WWII at age of 24, member of R.A.F. bomber crew shot down at sea.

2nd: The Monk and the White Butterfly, 2018, 20"x16"

3rd: Monk and Redbirds in Frost, 10"x8", 2018 acrylic on canvas

4th: Thomas Merton/The Path, 40"x30"", acrylic on canvas

5th: Bathing Mother Figure, 30"x24", acrylic on canvas, 2017

About the Artist: Me

Joe McGee (me), b. 1954. I received my BFA in Sculpture from the University of Louisville in 1986. I have now been making art for well over 35 years. Please take a look at some of my work on this site. Enjoy!

Below: My working wall in my studio, pic a few years old now, but I look the same now as a creaky 62 year old artist. No more sculpture, but I can still paint!

Images above, top: In my studio maybe 2010 or so.

Next: And as a young art student at the Hite Art Institute, University of Louisville in perhaps 1983 or so, age 29. I did not go on to college until I was age 24, having worked in construction for 7 years. I received my BFA in Sculpture in 1986. Always ready for a soccer game, here I sit on one of my sculptural creations. My daughter Tasha drew on the photo as a infant! :) Oh, I thought I was so grand in my youth!

3 Generations of McGee Art

My site also includes a couple pages on the work of my father, folk painter Hagan McGee, still painting daily in heaven! Bless you Dad!

And, I have a page on the Fiber Art of my daughter, Tasha McGee, as well!

The 3 of us had an exhibit at Spalding University in 2011, Three Generations of McGee Art!

Below: Tasha, my father Hagan and me down at dad's birthplace, Manton, KY, summer of 2016. His final trip down to his beloved birthplace. He passed Dec., 2017, age 90.

My just finished Exhibit, For the Children of Flowers, ran June thru July, 2017
My Swanson Contemporary exhibit, For the Children of Flowers, ended July 30, 2017. Thanks, so much fun!

Above: Morning sun hits the front of Swanson Contemporary Gallery, Louisville, KY, in early July, 2017, as the exhibit began.

Image below: 1960 photo by our mom, Grace Jane Breitenstein McGee, her first 3 children read in our magical back yard in the now gone Prestonia area of Louisville, flowers, crop garden, fruit trees and berries everywhere! Left to right, the artist, brothers Steve and Bill. I am sure we were wrestling soon after this tranquil photo was taken by mom! :)

For the Children of Flowers
Paintings by Joe McGee

            Why flowers? Well, I have always been drawn to them. I grew up here in Louisville with my brothers and sisters surrounded by flowers. My mother Grace (and her mother and her mother before) had flower beds everywhere it seemed. The different colors, shapes and textures fascinated me as a child. And more importantly, we learned early on that flowers were a source of food for insects and birds, and that they in turn pollinated the vegetables and fruit trees my father (along with my maternal grandfather) raised in our large back yard garden. Flowers, beautiful and necessary, a gift for us all from the heavens above as we share this planet together. So here, I attempt to capture, from my mind (these are all imagined works), the beauty and mystery of flowers!
            As a lifelong Louisvillian, it is a pleasure to show my take on the time-honored genre of Floral Paintings at Swanson Contemporary. I must admit, when I first began this series at the end of 2016, I had Chuck‚Äôs place (with its cool large storefront windows facing Market Street) in mind. And symbolically to me, this section of downtown Louisville, which once thrived as an important agricultural business center/gathering place for the farmers of the region, connects to my own family history. The old Haymarket complex, now long gone, was located only blocks away. There for decades, farmers such as my grandfather, Herman Breitenstein, sold their crops in the huge market complex. And they bought their seeds each year at Bunton Seed, another of the many agricultural supply businesses also formerly located nearby. Most are now long gone, relegated to the history books of Louisville. So, my flowers are a perfect fit at Swanson Gallery, right at home on E. Market Street, part the former bustling center of agricultural life here in Louisville!

            Finally, I created this series to honor my parents (Grace Jane and James Hagan McGee) for showing their children the amazing beauty of the natural world we all shared together in our large back yard. There, the many flower beds, fruit trees and the huge vegetable garden taught us that the things we grew were not only beautiful, but connected and vital for our lives. I thank my good parents for the flowers they have given their children!

Above, top:  Monk with Flowers", 30"x30", 2017
Next above: "Flowers for Grace", 48"x36", 2017, SOLD

Below: Blue Vase, Ochre Walls, one of my flower works currently at Edenside Gallery, Louisville, 30"x30"
Bottom: Flowers in Clay Pot, acrylic on canvas, 30"x24", 2017


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