Arts & Culture

Works of Cuesta College Fine Arts faculty on display in new exhibit

David Prochaska’s latest oil painting is called ‘Flight of Epicurus.’
David Prochaska’s latest oil painting is called ‘Flight of Epicurus.’ PHOTO BY JAY THOMPSON

Most college instructors strut their stuff with speeches at conferences or articles in journals. And the audience is usually other academics rather than their students.

In a perfect world, co-eds would extemporaneously say, “You’re a really gifted chemist, Dr. H!”

On the other hand, the chances of a Cuesta College student telling his beginning drawing teacher David Settino Scott, “Dude, your paintings they’re I don’t know scary and inspiring and I want to take your class again,” are close to 90 percent if I had to guess.

Scott and a couple of dozen or so of his fellow instructors are taking part in “Recognition: Selected Works of Cuesta College Fine Arts Faculty.”

No, the exhibit is not an exercise to turn students into super fans. In fact, the exhibit is an instrumental part of Cuesta’s Art 295 class, called simply, “art gallery.” The class “explores theoretical, technical and aesthetic aspects of exhibiting works of art, as well as providing actual experience in operating an art gallery.”

Instructor Tony Girolo helped organize a well-attended reception for the exhibit before a recent music faculty concert but wasn’t sure how many other opportunities campus and community members might have to visit again before the exhibit ends Oct. 19. He is hoping to round up a few gallery sitters — instructors willing to volunteer time, work-study students and art club students.

It would be a shame to keep David Prochaska’s brand new oil painting called “Flight of Epicurus” behind closed doors. And Jim Pendergast has found the perfect spot for his large-scale “Owens Lake,” a set of three inkjet-printed photos taken near Lone Pine.

Among the expected photography, paintings and sculpture is Mary Renzi’s “Super Untitled,” a group of four Superman mixed media drawings making their debut in the show. Another nice surprise is Robin Corell’s “Loggerheads,” of pine, cedar, lead and copper.

I can’t plug the Open Studios Art Tour enough, so I will point out that painter and sculptor David Settino Scott of San Miguel and ceramicist Mark Sensenbach of San Luis Obispo are two Cuesta instructors sharing their spaces with the public Oct. 13-14 and 20-21. Visit for the scoop.

As Mick Jagger sang, “Please allow me to introduce myself” I also work in the marketing office at Cuesta College.

Contact freelance writer Monica Fiscalini at