WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Halloween Takes Flight With Art Exhibit

Macomb, IL – It's the season of ghosts and goblins and other frightful delights. Halloween is just around the corner, and a new art exhibit captures the spirit of the holiday.

The exhibit is called Halloween Flight. It's the product of the imagination of Bruce Walters, Professor of Art at Western Illinois University.

An opening reception will be held Tuesday, October 27, 6:00pm - 8:00pm, at the Western Illinois University Art Gallery. Walters says it will not be your typical art exhibit opening.

"If I went to a Halloween exhibition and it was just a series of art works on a wall, I'd be disappointed," says Walters. "I think Halloween is meant to engulf you and is meant to be larger than you."

Walters says the opening reception will include projected images of ghosts and a bat in flight. Musicians and dancers will perform, and theater students will perform the opening scenes from "MacBeth."

Of course, Walters' work will also be on display. He's been working on Halloween Flight for two years.

"Halloween is, to me, more than just the trick or treating and more than the slasher films. There's a history - a tradition - that goes back, not hundreds but thousands of years," says Walters. "That's what I've tried to focus on in my artwork."

He calls Halloween Flight a work in progress and believes he will spend many years on it.

Walters says he identified with Halloween as a child.

"You can be someone you're not," says Walters. "Going out in the night when you're not normally out and people are dressed in certain ways. I guess I found it exciting."

The exhibit includes lenticular prints, which are similar to holograms. The show also features a series of drawings in which Walters says "I have tried to capture a sense of the mystery and eeriness of Halloween through a visual story of a cat that is steeped in symbolism."

Walters will lead a gallery walk Wednesday, October 28, beginning at 11:00am.

Halloween Flight will remain on display at the WIU Art Gallery through November 19.