Paintings Blend Organic Chemistry and Art

Posted: September 20, 2013

Paintings Blend Organic Chemistry and ArtThe Fireplace Gallery at Mt. Hood Community College (MHCC) is hosting a free art exhibit by David Cordes, “Reflections on Organic Chemistry,” now through Oct. 27.

Cordes, a professor of organic chemistry at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Ore., has two sets of paintings on exhibit at MHCC. The first, “100 years of Organic Chemistry,” is a series of 13 portraits of some of the signature personalities involved in the development of the science of organic chemistry in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

“This was a revolutionary time in the history of chemistry and science,” says Cordes. “The cast of characters depicted in these works were among the pioneers in a contentious battle to push forward the frontiers of the new science.”

A second set of paintings, “The Biggest Hits of Organic Chemistry,” features reflections on the major themes and concepts that are explored in an introductory organic chemistry class, notes Cordes.

Conceptually, each painting in the second series mirrors a chapter in an introduction to organic chemistry textbook. Eventually, Cordes hopes to develop the series into a full set of 20 – 30 paintings.

He describes his paintings as “departure points for reflecting on the complex interactions of history, science, culture and scholarship, adding, “Don’t worry if you have never studied organic chemistry, just relax and enjoy the show!”

Gallery Hours Monday through Friday
The Fireplace Gallery is located in the Student Union on the Gresham Campus, 26000 S.E. Stark Street. Hours are Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. and Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Parking on all MHCC campuses is free, no permit required.

People requiring accommodations due to a disability should contact the Disability Services office at 503-491-6923 or 503-491-7670 (TDD). Please call at least two weeks prior to the event.

For more information, please contact the Office of College Advancement, 503-491-7204 or

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 Last Modified: 9/20/2013 02:47:05 PM