Art professor Jay Constantine focuses on current events and history in new exhibit in GRCC’s Paul Collins Art Gallery

Artist Jay Constantine focuses on current events and history in the newest exhibit in Grand Rapids Community College’s Paul Collins Art Gallery.

Constantine is a retired professor from Ferris State University’s Kendall College of Art and Design, and the exhibit will run through the end of January.

Constantine was a painting professor at Kendall from 1980 until 2020. He chaired the Fine Art program and the Painting program, and was instrumental in developing the undergraduate Painting major and master’s Painting program.

“Many of the skills that I use in my own work, I learned at Kendall by teaching them,” he said in his Kendall biography.  “You teach the course you wish you’d had as a student.”

In his artist statement, Constantine revealed his work since 2015 has concerned itself with historical and biographical subjects.

“Researching history helps to anchor my work in nonfiction and often provides some of the most interesting stories,” he wrote. “There is a long tradition of narrative painting in art history and I would like to think that I add my own unique approach to that tradition.”

Work in the gallery includes “A Brief History of Plastic,” including “the grim reality of plastic products that have accumulated in massive quantities in the oceans and waterways.”

He also touches subjects as varied as the plot to kidnap Gov. Whitmer, scenes from the life of Friedrich Nietzsche, the discovery of Caligula’s sunken pleasure barge, and a memorial portrait of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, an activist who endured discrimination because of her gender and atheism.

“My art might be characterized as a kind of history painting with an emphasis on stylized realism,” he wrote. “Identity is baked into history, which is always written from someone’s point of view. New information and research can change our understanding and artists have also created new narratives by using historical fiction or alternate histories. The creative possibilities are endless, and I have only scratched the surface.”

Constantine’s work is held in in the Grand Valley State University permanent collection, the Grand Rapids Art Museum, the Muskegon Community College collection, the Kalamazoo Institute of Art and Pratt Graphics Center, and several private collections. His work can also be seen at

The Paul Collins Art Gallery is located on the fourth floor of Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall, 143 Bostwick Ave. NE. The gallery reopens with the Jan. 9 start of the winter 2023 semester. The gallery’s hours are 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays.

GRCC Policies updated

Policy Meeting

December 2022

3.6 Records Management

  • Section VII: Updated related documents to reflect accurate Clery Act Title and add a reference to the Bullard-Plawecki Right to Know Act (“BPERKA”).
  • Section IX: Clarified that the definition of “student records” includes a reference to “education records”
  • Removed outdated and unnecessary links
  • Language changes to make the policy more accessible

3.7 Contracting Authority

  • Section IX: Added language to reflect that copies of fully executed agreements must be provided to the individual executing the contract on behalf of the College.

The new/revised policies have been added to the College Policies website.

Be loud and proud, refresh your headshot on Jan. 5

GRCC has outstanding faculty and staff members. Help us show students, potential students and community members the quality of the people here at GRCC serving our community by having a current headshot for the website and other uses.

The Communications Department is providing an opportunity for faculty and staff to have free headshots photographed from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Jan. 5 – Learning Day – on the third floor of the Student Center in the lounge area.

Without a headshot, the webpage shows a missing photo icon or a RaiderCard photo.

Communications stresses that GRCC provides an affordable education, but more importantly, a quality education. Our expert faculty and dedicated staff members are selling points! Help us highlight your work and attract new students by updating your headshot and web bio. 

Nominations being sought for 2023 Emeritus Faculty Award

You are invited to nominate a GRCC retired faculty or administrator for the Emeritus Faculty Award.

This award was established in 1985 to honor those instructors and administrators whose dedication and creativity have left an indelible mark on the lives of students and colleagues at GRCC.  During their tenure at GRCC and since their retirement, they have continued to promote GRCC’s “Commitment to Excellence.”

Please submit online nominations by noon on Friday,  February 10, 2023. For more information, please visit the Emeritus Award webpage.