Nicholas Roerich (1874-1947) was a man of many facets. Not only did he paint over 6,000 paintings, he also designed sets and costumes for Stravinsky’s “Le Sacre du Printemps” and other ballets and operas. He wrote more than 20 books on art, culture, and philosophy, carried out extensive archeological research and excavations in his native Russia and his adopted homeland of India, and developed a reputation for his focus on the spiritual positivity of nature and humanity.
Thanks to the generosity of the late Alice Tate, UNC Charlotte owns 37 paintings and drawings by Roerich. Many of the paintings were produced while Roerich was in the field and are on very fragile paper, cardboard, wood, and any other material he could easily find. They are currently housed in Special Collections at Atkins Library.
For the first time in the UNC Charlotte Galleries, a selection of Roerich’s works from Special Collections will be on public view. These painted observations of the majestic Himalayan landscape are both straightforward and abstract, representing Roerich’s view of nature as a truly transcendental creation beyond our complete understanding. Several of the pieces have been restored and framed thanks to an anonymous gift.