MOORHEAD — The Rourke Art Gallery + Museum is scaring up some fun this holiday season.
The Moorhead institution’s newest treat of a show is the Halloween-themed "The Art Ghoullery III: The Long Masquerade."
The group show, on display through Nov. 15, features 31 artists and their take on the spookiest time of the year.
“Halloween is a holiday a lot of us grew up with,” says Mark Elton, who has helped put the show together each year. “All of our stories are different. You can see that in all of the works. Some are whimsical, and some tap into deep, inherent fears that we can all relate to.”
His digital illustration, “Carving on the Witch Elm,” depicts a childlike werewolf gleefully taking a chainsaw to a tree stump that resembles a pixie witch.
He doesn’t want to explain how the piece came about, but says it’s somewhat personal as he recently had to cut down a tree in his yard.
“You will feel like there’s a story there,” he says.
He says a number of the pieces seem like they could have been illustrations pulled from a storybook, like Heather Franzen Rutten’s painting, “Ghost,” which shows a white cat apparition keeping an eye over a pumpkin patch.
Beyond just giving artists a chance to get creative with Halloween, the show also embraces illustrations more than some other exhibits have.
“I wanted to put together a show that not only celebrates a fun holiday, but celebrates the more representational art work that galleries and museums don’t always show,” Elton says.
He points to Leslie Peterson’s map of sunken ships on Lake Superior.
“It feels like something you’d get on a ghost tour, but it’s art,” he says.
While some of the show mixes history and horror, Elton says it's appropriate for kids and adults alike.
“We try to keep it fun for all ages, much like the holiday itself,” he says.