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 Harold James ("Hal") McWhinnie  (1929 - 2004)



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Lived/Active: Maryland/Florida/Illinois      Known for: ceramics, computer art, teaching

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Harold James ("Hal") McWhinnie
An example of work by Harold James ("Hal") McWhinnie
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Following is a memorial biography written by a representative of the University of Maryland Education Department.

"Harold “Hal” James McWhinnie: Be it resolved that on February 11, 2005, the faculty and staff of the College of Education at the University of Maryland honor the life and professional career and acknowledge the death of Dr. Harold James McWhinnie, a former professor in the art education program in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction.

Dr. McWhinnie, known as “Hal,” passed away on April 7, 2004, at the age of 74 in Fort Myers, Florida, where he lived with his wife Peggy, who survives him. Other survivors include his daughter Francesca M. Pinkston and her husband, Jeffrey, of Cape Coral, Florida.

Hal earned his bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University, and his M.F.A. from the Chicago Institute. He earned his Ed.D. from Stanford University. He was respected worldwide as a ceramicist and had numerous solo shows and participated in many group juried shows. He published more than 60 articles about glaze formulation and was well known in area galleries where he showed and sold his works.

Hal was actively involved in numerous art and art education professional associations including the College Art Association, the National Art Education Association, and the Maryland Art Education Association.

Former students recall him as a caring, and compassionate mentor with an eccentric personality that underscored his artistic intellect. He was known to invite students to his Kensington home to visit his “Garden of Earthly Delights,” named for Bosch’s famous painting of the same name. He would sit with them in the large garden and discuss art and art education issues, exhibits, and trends that could influence directions the students could explore.

Hal’s art took a new direction in the late 1980s as he became interested in computer art, especially chaos theory and the intricate designs and patterns one could create. He began combining computer art with oil painting in the early1990s, moving away from ceramics into the “new” mixed media technology.

He published several books and articles during his teaching careers at the University of Maryland and Ohio State University. Penn State lists his papers and artworks among its notable collections in art education.

Following his retirement from the University of Maryland in 1997, Hal continued his art research and work as an artist. He established his own Institute for Arts Education Digital, a free online service that featured courses in art and art education.

The College of Education extends its sincere condolences to his family, friends and colleagues."

Submitted by George Lee

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