The Demuth Museum announced “A Moment in Time: The Paintings of Hubert J. FitzGerald,” a solo exhibit of the work of Hugh FitzGerald, an Armstrong employee of 43 years and accomplished fine artist.  This exhibit runs from April 15 – July 1 and illustrates the two, very prolific sides of FitzGerald’s talent: his fine art repertoire distinguished by kaleidoscopic patterns, intense color and intricate detail and his “commercial art” as a pioneering designer for Armstrong World Industries, the 150 year old flooring and ceilings manufacturer headquartered in Lancaster, PA.  

From the moment he joined the Armstrong advertising and design department in 1951, FitzGerald’s creativity, commitment and passion for design set the company, its image and its products apart.   He started out by designing the advertising displays used at flooring retailers for Armstrong Circle Theater, an early television show that ran from 1950 to 1963 and produced premier performances of musicals like Brigadoon and Kiss Me Kate.   He also soon began to play a critical role in product development where he brought his keen eye for pattern and color to the flooring product portfolio. His most notable achievements include contributing his design talent to reinterpreting linoleum into vinyl products and securing several patents within the Excelon and CORLON Tile Collections.  Over fifty years later, these patterns are still specified by architects today for use in commercial buildings. 

“Hugh FitzGerald’s early work exemplified what still continues in our designs today, a creative combination of art and function,” said Julianne Pierce, Director, Marketing & Design. “This exhibit reinforces the value Armstrong places on design, and shines a light on our talented staff of designers, past and present.  We are delighted to support the exhibit and celebrate Hugh’s talent and contributions to Armstrong.”

Demuth Museum Executive Director Anne M. Lampe said, “Hugh exemplifies how artists can translate their talents to the professional world and make an incredible mark on business and still explore the personal side of their creativity through fine art work. Hugh ‘created’ every day of his life – either at home or at work and left a tremendous legacy and body of work to both the flooring industry and the art world.” 

FitzGerald exhibited nationally and internationally.  His fine art is notable for its technical precision and versatility; his ability to summon the appropriate media to convey his visual interpretation of different subjects has been called nothing less than astounding.