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Retrospective exhibits art of late professor

Oklahoman Published: October 6, 2006
A show of the wild and witty serigraphs of the late Dan Kiacz should offer his friends, former students, fans and collectors a good chance to celebrate the life and work of the longtime University of Oklahoma faculty member who died in 2004 at age 56.

The retrospective exhibit of Kiacz's serigraphs on paper and leather, prints and mixed media watercolors will open with a reception from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. today at the JRB Art at The Elms gallery, 2810 N Walker.

Typical of Kiacz's madcap and macabre, yet somehow always upbeat and energetic approach to Mexican/Southwestern subject matter, loosely based on folk tales, animals and multicultural myths, are several of the serigraphs in his "Rancho Encantado" series.

Central to this series is a multicolored skeletal character who always seems to be having a wonderful time, whether he's dancing with a pretty senorita, riding a cougar across the desert, or having a pistol and knife duel with a fiery nocturnal desert apparition.

The skeleton is also the ironic protagonist of three large mixed media watercolors on dark paper by Kiacz.

One, called "Daredevil," shows the skeleton making a ski jump over a wintery abyss, clinging to rattlesnake poles, wearing a red scarf, red skis and a red sombrero, and a second, called "Desert Divot," shows him teeing off on a spectral golf course.

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