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A Retrospective Exhibition of the Art of Bruce Montgomery
September 29, 2009, Volume 56, No. 05


Bruce Montgomery

The Burrison Gallery is honored to present a special retrospective exhibition of the art of the late Bruce Montgomery, the long-time director of the Penn Glee Club. The exhibit runs now through October 23, encompasses work from his high school days in the 1940s at Germantown Friends School and continues through his years as a fine arts major at Bethany College, where his mentor was the well-known Swedish-American post-impressionist, Birger Sandzén. In the late 1950s, Monty found an artistic outlet through his sketches and oil paintings, which exemplified the profound impact his combat experiences in Korea had on the rest of his life. Oils continued to be his preferred medium through the 1960s. As his music career flourished, so did his set designs, program covers, and theatrical posters. He found there was less and less time to be serious about his art.

“Watercolor landscapes depicting scenes of the rugged Maine coast became the perfect outlet for ‘Philadelphia’s Renaissance Man.’ He could quickly produce them, yet still express his talent and passion for painting,” said his sister Liz Thomas. At left, “It’s All My Fault” a scene on Spruce Head Island, Maine, is typical of the many fascinating faults that give the granite rocks on the coast of Maine their signature look. What began as a hobby in the 1970s became a business after his retirement from Penn, when he established Monty Inc. to market note cards of his watercolors at www.montyart.com. “He found tremendous satisfaction in this medium and continued painting prolifically for the rest of his life,” his sister added.

She said he treasured his associations at the Faculty Club (now the University Club) and his friendship with “Maury” Burrison, for whom the Gallery is named. “Although Monty is best remembered for his brilliant musical career, we hope you will enjoy this unique opportunity to learn about “the other side of Monty” through the Montgomery family’s private collection of his art,” concluded Ms. Thomas.

There will be limited edition prints, DVDs: Bruce Montgomery—A Celebration of Life, October 5, 2008; Monty’s one-of-a-kind memorial service recorded live at Irvine Auditorium and the Bruce Montgomery Theatre Dedication Gala, May 10, 2008; a cabaret of Monty’s music narrated by Monty himself at his last public appearance recorded live at the Annenberg Center, and his memoir, Brothers, Sing On! available for sale.

Almanac - September 29, 2009, Volume 56, No. 05