The Champaign County Historical Society will host artist Michael Major for a presentation at 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 6. His presentation will be based on a book that he is completing for his family titled An Artist’s Memories about his career of creating drawings, paintings and sculpture. He will show pictures from the book of the artwork and explain how drawing is the foundation for painting and sculpture.
Major has completed over 200 bronze sculptures including large public monuments and small limited edition castings. Those monuments include life-size and larger than life monuments of public figures such as Simon Kenton,William Tecumseh Sherman, Abraham Lincoln, George Rogers Clark, Mother Alfred Moes (founder of the Mayo Clinic) and many more.
Michael and his wife Jane moved to Urbana in the mid-seventies for Michael to serve as an artist-in-residence for the college and county schools. Their intention was to stay one year before moving back to New York where he felt he needed to be for his art career. They fell in love with the people and environment of Champaign County including Urbana’s architecture and Urbana College. After finding and purchasing an abandoned church to renovate for a home and art studio they committed to stay on here.
Major studied art at the Dayton Art Institute from the sixth grade through his senior year of high school, has a BS, Summa Cum Laude from Ohio University and an MFA from Pratt Institute, New York.
He founded Main Graphics in 1988 in part to publish books of drawings and after thirty-three years sold the company recently to Boldman Printing.
He continues to spend most of his time at his art studio at 119 Miami Street along with the Champaign County Arts Council and Architect daughter Sarah Mackert.