KOA Art Gallery is hosting “Power Within” an art show of work by
Smethport artist Julie Mader depicting cancer-fighting plants.
The exhibition of 29 paintings will
be on display in Blaisdell Hall through July
3. The gallery is open from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and
will also be open during the McKean County Unit of the American Cancer
Society’s 24-hour Relay for Life held on campus from noon June 28 through noon
“I’m very excited about the show
being on campus during the Relay for Life event and hope that the guest sheet
in the gallery will be overflowing with visitor signatures after the weekend,”
Mader said she first had the idea of
the traveling exhibition, which is now on its fifth stop in the region, more
than a decade ago. “The idea came from witnessing the extreme love and strength
of my neighbor Beth Baker and her family as she fought against cancer,” Mader
said. “As years passed, I was inspired by additional cancer patients and their
After meeting with Dr. Eyad Al-Hattab, an oncologist affiliated with
Bradford Regional Medical Center, Mader chose to focus on plants that provide
alkaloids used in chemotherapy medicines. She then had the plant list she
developed, which includes autumn crocus, birch, English yew, lapacho tree,
mayapple, Pacific yew and periwinkle, reviewed by a BRMC pharmacist.
After researching and selecting
plants, Mader took on the challenge of finding reference photographs for each.
“The diverse locations that produce the flora depicted in ‘Power Within’
challenged my usual approach of going for a drive to find the next painting
subject,” she said.
“I reached out via the Internet to
secure reference photograph resources and was delighted to find caring support
and encouragement for ‘Power Within’ from British Columbia to Delaware.”
The exhibition is supported by a
Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts Grant and has already traveled to sites in
Smethport, Bradford, Ridgway and Emporium. Following its engagement in the KOA
Gallery, it will travel on to Charles Cole Memorial Hospital in Coudersport
(July 9-31), S.S. Bovard Library in Tionesta (Aug. 8-20), and Jefferson County
History Center in Brookville (Aug. 21 through January 2014).
Mader will attend the Relay for Life
on Saturday morning with block prints created for Power Within that will be
available to those who make a donation to the relay.
For more information on Mader or the
exhibit, visit her website at www.juliemader.com.