BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY


Robert Mazur with one of his water-inspired paintings.

Robert Mazur with one of his water-inspired paintings.

Magazine names retired BGSU professor among top artists over 60

Robert Mazur, a Professor Emeritus of art, is one of the United States’ top artists over age 60.

That’s according to The Artist’s Magazine, which features the Bowling Green resident and nine other painters in its March cover story, “Splendid Over 60! 10 Artists Prove Age Is Just a Number.”

Responding to the magazine’s call to artists, Mazur, 71, submitted a disk with photos of eight of his acrylic paintings—based on underwater photos—and a description of each.

“My Water Series was inspired by photographs from friends—of the streams and rivers of Connecticut, the Red Sea and the Atlantic Ocean,” he writes in his story, the first of the 10 in the magazine spread. “On a sabbatical about 20 years ago, I went to the Florida Keys and did some diving. I took underwater photos with cheap cameras and came up with photos of jellyfish and barracudas, with the sunlight coming through and the divers coming down.

“I reduce my photo to geometric shapes and hope that I can convey the force of water changes without too much drawing,” Mazur adds. “I’m a Pisces, and the effects of water just fascinate me. A diver leaves a fluorescence behind him, and I try to convey that image with a vertical strength and a secondary sparkle surrounding him or her.”

More than 1,500 candidates “dropped their names in our proverbial hat,” writes Associate Editor Grace Dobush in her lead-in to the piece. “After evaluating the entries and fighting over favorites, we decided to choose just 10 in order to better display these wonderful artists’ work.”

The recognition from the magazine, Mazur said, was “a nice gesture on their part.”

The other four men and five women chosen for the honor work in various media, also including oil, watercolor, graphite and pastel. One is from Livonia, Mich., and another from Wichita, Kan., but most live either on the East Coast (two in Florida and one each in Atlanta and Maryland) or the West Coach (San Francisco, Portland and Spokane).

At the same time the magazine is on newsstands, prints of four of Mazur’s water-inspired works on large canvasses can be purchased on Target.com, through an arrangement with American Frame in Maumee.

Laura Jajko of American Frame said her family’s business has a longtime relationship with Target, to whom she recommends artists whose work she feels would be a good fit with the retailer’s customers.

To find the reproductions of Mazur’s art on Target.com, type “Mazur” in the Search box near the top of the home page.

A Toledo native, Mazur earned his bachelor of fine arts degree in design from BGSU in 1960. He added a master of fine arts degree in painting from the University in 1965, when he also joined the art faculty.

During his 33-year career at Bowling Green, he served at various times as director and associate director of the School of Art, as well as director of graduate studies in art.

Mazur was a three-time winner of the Il Magnifico award from the Medici Circle—friends and patrons of the School of Art—for overall excellence in teaching, service and scholarly/creative activities. In 1984 and 1987, he received the Dorothy Uber Bryan Award for outstanding service to the school and its students. And in 1990, BGSU’s Undergraduate Student Government honored him as the top teacher in the College of Arts and Sciences with its Faculty Excellence Award.

February 23, 2009