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Contact: Jeff Theodore

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Artist Donates Gift to Kean, Gallery to Be Rededicated in Parentsí Name

Union, N.J. - More than 80 years ago, prolific artist W. Carl Burger immigrated with his parents from Germany to America. They nurtured their sonís artistic skills, and now with Burgerís most recent gift to Kean University, the largest art gallery at Kean will soon bear the names of Burgerís parents, Karl and Helen Burger.

Burger, who worked at Kean for more than 40 years and retired as Professor Emeritus of Art in 1993, will help dedicate the art gallery in memory of his parents inside Keanís Center for Academic Success on June 18.

An exhibit, entitled Six Masters of New Jersey, will coincide with the galleryís renaming. The exhibit, curated by Burger, debuts at 2 p.m. on June 18 and runs through July 16. It will feature the works of six artists, friends and contemporaries that Burger selected based on their various visual statements. Regular gallery hours to view the exhibit will be 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

Known most prominently for creating a mix of hundreds of watercolor and collage paintings, Burgerís works are represented in many corporate and private collections and several major museums. Many of his creations are based on the countryside near his home in Califon, N.J.

During a recent interview with NJN Network, Burger said, "Landscapes are a natural thing to work with and watercolors lend themselves to loose free things. I think you should never tire of some of the ordinary things in life like nature."

Burger studied interior design, history, anthropology and semantics to inform his artistic style. After serving during World War II in the Army, Burger resumed college at New York University, earning bachelorís and masterís degrees in Fine Arts education. He also did postgraduate work at Columbia University and Rutgers University.

His artwork has been exhibited in the Butler Institute of American Art, Newark Museum, Noyes Museum, Montclair Museum and the Morris Museum, where he has gifted 62 of his paintings. In the corporate world, his work can be found at Johnson & Johnson, British Airways and Nabisco.

Burgerís work has been hailed as extraordinary by several art industry executives.

"His paintings offer a brilliant demonstration of animated form," said Louis A. Zona, director of the Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio. "Perhaps no painter since the Fauvemaster, Raoul Dufy, has utilized line with as much ease and effectiveness as Burger. Leonardo DaVinci knew this (so apparent in the linear detail in the sleeve fabric of the Mona Lisa). But Burgerís approach surely points to his understanding of what the abstract expressionists have achieved."

For more information, call Kean Gallery Director Neil Tetkowski at 908-737-4407.