Two acclaimed Egeli artists stage a joint showcase at Maryland Hall
Father and daughter pair up for a rare exhibit
Like father like … daughter?
Peter Egeli, 80, is a well-regarded painter and portrait artist. A son of famed portraitist Bjorn Egeli, a native of Norway, he grew up in a family where every one of his siblings picked up the paintbrush en route to becoming acclaimed artists.
His son Stuart Egeli took another path. A 1992 Naval Academy graduate, he had a 24-year career in the Navy.
His daughter Lisa, 48, has now followed in his paint-spattered footsteps, becoming a third-generation member of the Egeli artistic legacy.
She, too, is a portrait and landscape artist. Her portraits hang in institutions and in public and private collections. Her portfolio includes meticulously detailed portraits of gorillas and chimpanzees painted in their natural settings.
On March 2 through April 11, the father-and-daughter duo are exhibiting their landscapes, maritime scenes and wildlife studies in the Chaney Gallery at Maryland Hall, 801 Chase St., Annapolis. Their showcase is called “Nature/ Nurture: The Paintings of Father and Daughter.”
This is the first time they have exhibited together since family members staged a show in Baltimore in 1985.
In the showcase will be about 50 of their works both large and small. Primarily oil paintings, the Egelis are incorporating several pastel sketches and watercolor paintings into the display.
Some were painted while the pair were outside, standing either side-by-side or back-to-back. Several were created near the house of her father and mother Elizabeth Stuart “Stu” Egeli in the St. Mary’s County town of Drayden.
Peter and Stu have been married 51 years. Carrying on the family tradition, Stu is an artist, too.
“My approach to art comes down through my dad,” said Lisa, who resides in Churchton with her wife, Jacqueline Savitz.
Comparing their style to that of an uncle, Cedric Egeli, who has a large studio on his Edgewater estate, Lisa said, “Our focus is on tonalism, instead of color.” She noted her father and uncle both served in the military. Her father was a Marine; Cedric went into the Army. Afterward, Cedric went to Cape Cod School of Art, studying under the influential Henry Hensche, while Peter honed his craft at the Corcoran School of Art and at Maryland Institute, under Jacques Maroger. Lisa, a graduate of the Academy of Art in Chicago, has studied in other fine arts programs in the U.S. and abroad.
It was Lisa’s idea to hold an exhibit with her father.
“It’s fun to have a chance to show with him,” said Lisa, who often requests critiques from her father. “He can critique something without changing it into what he would have done. It’s very helpful to me.”
Peter and Stu Egeli entered Lisa Egeli’s Churchton studio as she was talking. Peter glanced over at a large landscape Lisa had just completed. He broke into a broad smile.
“This is a fantastic painting!” Peter said. “Lisa is one of the premier landscape painters in the country.”
She pulled a painting off the wall of her studio and brought it over to her father. He’d been outside, unloading paintings he plans to put in the show. Peter was holding a framed painting of a solitary egret.
Lisa held up her painting. It, too depicted an egret – only this one was gazing at its twin reflection on the water.
The two agreed the Egeli egrets would look nice hanging side-by-side.
The opening reception for the show is 5:30 to 7 p.m., March 5. The two host a gallery talk from 5:30 to 7 p.m., March 11.
For information, visit http://www.marylandhall.org .
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