Walter Art Gallery hosted the solo exhibition of fine art muralist and scenic artist Craig Cheply, who showcased a comprehensive installation of his fine art entitled "Dawn To Dawn: The Continued Observations," guest curated by Nicole Royse of Royse Contemporary.
Since 2006 the artist has been creating his sometimes controversial conceptual "100% Natural Series" utilizing his visual observations and examining the sociological, political, environmental, economic, geographic, religious and natural landscapes on both the domestic and world stages in the 21st Century. This exhibition was a retrospective of Cheply's diverse and impressive variety of work evolving from his solo exhibit "Dawn To Dawn -Past, Present, Possible Futures" shown at the Arizona Museum of Natural History in 2003. The show included paintings and mixed media works ranging in subject from landscapes of the southwest to pieces addressing political, environmental and social commentaries.
Cheply invites the viewer to closely examine his artwork and decide for themselves what is presented, its meaning, the subject matter, and mediums. "My artworks are visually commenting upon man's history and future state of affairs-the good, the bad, and the downright ugly." This collection of work juxtaposed the beautiful and the poignant observations of the world by the artist, brilliantly depicting the southwest along with provocative history facing our world from a multifaceted perspective, states curator Nicole Royse.
Cheply received his Bachelors of Fine Arts from Arizona State University in Interior Design in 1980. He currently works as both a commercial and fine artist and since 2015 he has worked as the lead scenic artist for the Arizona Opera. Cheply's work can be found in both public and private collections throughout the United States including the Arizona Museum of Natural History -10 permanent solo commissioned murals and various scenic works, Burton Barr Central Library, the City of Glendale, and the City of Chandler.
Cheply has exhibited nationally garnering numerous awards including 2014 See Me Grand Prize Winner â€“"Creatives Rising," 2013 Maryland Federation of Art "American Landscapes" Honorable Mention, 2010 BWAC "Wide Open" Brooklyn, NY- Co-winner-People's Choice Award, 2008 Chandler Ostrich Public Art Project-1st Place, and 2006 Glendale Arts Council 43rd Annual 1st place in Oil/Acrylic division + Best of Show. Â His artwork has been featured in numerous publications both online and in print including Phoenix Home & Garden Magazine, the Arizona Republic, Visual Art Source, SouthwestArt Magazine and "Interviews with 17 Visual Fine Artists" writer James Leonard-Amodeo, Sierra Arts Productions.