‘At the Piano,’ a self-portrait by Charles McVicker.

Noted Princeton artist Charles McVicker will be celebrating his long career with his Arts Council of Princeton exhibition “McVicker at 90: A Retrospective,” opening with a free reception on Saturday, February 22, from 3 to 5 p.m., and remaining on view through March 14.

The artist’s oil, acrylics, and watercolor paintings have received awards from American Watercolor Society, National Society of Painters in Acrylic and Casein, Phillips Mill Annual, and others and are in the Princeton University and Zimmerli Museum of Art at Rutgers collections.

In a statement, McVicker says the following about his approach:

“Painting has been for me a visual autobiography. I have recorded scenes and events that impressed and excited me. Often these have been quiet situations that otherwise might be overlooked. Wherever I travel I am on the lookout for the beauty and drama of the scene around me. Most contemporary lives are rushed and often hectic. I, many times, choose situations to paint that most people might miss. I feel that an artist is one who really looks. This intense observation is a primary activity of a painter — particularly one who works in the realistic idiom.

Although painting and so-called realism are not in vogue or on the cutting edge of the present-day art world, I profess that I may be in the avant-garde. Cubism and all the other isms that have evolved are 40 to 100 years old. Perhaps it is time to rediscover the American art that evolves from Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent, and Edward Hopper. I claim that heritage.

Arts Council of Princeton, Paul Robeson Center for the Arts, 102 Witherspoon Street, Princeton, Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free. 609-924-8777 or www.artscouncilofprinceton.org.

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