The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper


TMA exhibit showcases works of artists dealing with cancer

Like many people impacted by cancer, the late Dorothy Uber Bryan, used art as a form of therapy. “The Chemo Paintings,” a series of works by Bryan, along with art by those currently battling the disease, are part of a new exhibition opening Jan. 18 in the Toledo Museum of Art’s Community Gallery.

Dorothy Uber Bryan

The mixed media “Wilted,” created
in 1989, is one of the 11 works in
Dorothy Uber Bryan’s “The Chemo
Paintings” exhibition, on display at
the Toledo Museum of Art Jan. 18
through March 21.

The exhibition, which continues through March 21, reveals how Bryan, formerly of Bowling Green, used art to express the range of emotions including pain, rage and finally joy she felt during her fight with cancer. Each object in the series portrays a different stage of the artist’s 1989 battle. One painting not previously shown publicly joins 10 others in this exhibition.

Works of art by other local residents of all ages affected by cancer and who participate in the Museum’s Community ArtReach Program are being exhibited as well.

According to Jennifer Bandeen, community gallery manager, the works convey how those battling cancer and their loved ones can use art to express their journey with the disease, just as Bryan did when creating The Chemo Paintings. Bryan died in 2001.

Bryan began her art career later in life. Acting on a long-held interest, she enrolled in art classes at Bowling Green State University after raising her family. She became well-known in the region as an artist and arts supporter. BGSU’s centerpiece art gallery is named for her. She and her husband, Ashel Bryan, also now deceased, received a 1994 Governor’s Award in recognition of their patronage of the arts.

Bryan’s “Chemo Paintings” were reproduced and sold to raise funds for cancer research. The story of how Bryan used art to express her struggle with cancer was the subject of a 1991 book, then a 1996 public television documentary that aired nationally.

Admission to both the exhibition and the museum is free. The Toledo Museum of Art is located at 2445 Monroe St. at Scottwood. For general information, visitors can call 419-255-8000 or 800-644-6862, or visit

“The Chemo Paintings” by Dorothy Uber Bryan, including one painting in the series of 11 that has never before been shown publicly, will be on display starting Jan. 18 at the Toledo Museum of Art Community Gallery. Also on display will be works by other local residents impacted by cancer.




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