Exhibition highlights artist’s view on climate

Published on September 6, 2023

A sculpture by Craig McDowall.

ELKTON, Md.: The Cecil College Art and Design Program will feature a solo exhibition by Craig McDowall entitled “Elemental Forces” at the Elkton Station Gallery, located at 107 Railroad Avenue, Elkton, Md. The “Elemental Forces” exhibit opens in conjunction with the Elkton Art Loop First Friday event on October 6. There will be an opening reception on Friday, Oct. 6, from 5 – 8 p.m.

“I am concerned about climate change and its effect on everything globally. The topic encompasses all aspects of life, and I would have to dig deep to find something that ties it all together artistically. I explored the idea of climate models for a long time, but it didn’t quite click,” said McDowall. Then, while listening to a radio program suggesting various aspects of climate change are reaching “tipping points,” or the point of no return, McDowall knew immediately what his theme would be. He quickly scribbled the phrase on a sticky note.

Through drawings and large sculpture, McDowall explores his view that nature strives for balance while humanity constantly pushes in destructive directions. He visually explores a tipping point being reached, and nature drastically adjusting to maintain the balance. His art conveys tension; a moment when things might tumble out of control.

The artworks include the classical Greek elements: Earth, Water, Air, and Fire. McDowell’s work suggests that those are the elements that appear to be attacking humanity at every turn as the climate changes. McDowall contends that humanity is a fifth element in a new Anthropocene epoch and that there is constant tension between the Greek elements, technology, and humanity.

“My work represents my view that humanity has pushed the other elements to their tipping point, and nature will try to restore the balance of the Elemental Forces,” said McDowell. “Which may cause tumult.”

A native of Colorado who now lives in Maryland, McDowall earned a Bachelor of Fine Art degree with concentrations in sculpture, drawing, and printmaking. After graduation, he exhibited his work widely in Colorado at juried and invitational exhibits.

McDowell and his wife Cathy lived for a time in Texas, where he attended the San Antonio Art Institute as an artist-in-residence. While living in the Pacific Northwest, he was the finalist for a large outdoor sculpture commission in Olympia, Washington.

In 2012, the couple moved to Perryville, Md., where he enjoys sketching and continuing the Unintentional Night Club Series. His work can be viewed at www.craigmcdowall.com

Stop by the Elkton Station Gallery during regular Elkton Station hours to view all works.

  • Monday:Thursday: 7 a.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Friday:7 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Saturday:8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

For more information, please email cecilcollegeart@nullcecil.edu.