Radford University Art Museum remembers art professor with “Ed LeShock: a Retrospective”


Some would say artists are immortal. They leave a lasting impression through their art that often lingers beyond their life span. Radford University Art Museum is making sure this is the case for professor of art Edward LeShock.

In remembrance, the museum is hosting a retrospective exhibition of his artwork. A reception at 5 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017, opens the exhibit of LeShock’s prints, paintings, drawings and sculpture in the Covington Center gallery.

LeShock taught at Radford University from 1977 until his death in 2013. His classes covered a wide gamut from graphic design to drawing. While teaching, he also freelanced as a graphic designer and illustrator. Clients such as Newsweek, the U.S. Department of Defense and Playboy featured his work. In 1986, he won the Award for Excellence in Illustration from the National Association Art Directors and Designers.

He exhibited throughout the world. These included shows in Tel Aviv, Israel; Coral Gables, Florida; Philadelphia; New Orleans; and New York. He also received an award from American Artist magazine in 1978.

Before this, he received his M.Ed. from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University and a B.A. and B.S. from Pennsylvania State University. According to his significant other, Marion Mercer, LeShock grew up in a coal mining area of Pennsylvania in the 1950s, and was the first college graduate and artist in his family.

“His high school yearbook reveals a popular student who was known for his amazing talent and accomplishments with classical guitar and as an artist,” she said. “As a young man he pursued martial arts to black belt level and was a Golden Gloves boxer. Ultimately he was an artist first and foremost. His art was entirely centered in his belief in drawing, and it was the heart of everything he did.”

Mercer describes LeShock as a private, strong-willed and determined person as well as being generous, kind-hearted and witty. Raised as a Catholic by his Russian-Polish parents, one of his most significant artistic efforts was the Stations of the Cross he created and donated to St. Jude's Catholic Church in Radford.

“Ed LeShock: A Retrospective” exhibition and reception are open to the public at the Radford University Art Museum in the Covington Center. Admission is free. The reception starts at 5 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017. The exhibition runs until March 2. The museum is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and weekends from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Call 540-831-5754 for more information.

Feb 2, 2017
Leslie King