by: Nancy Kalikow Maxwell
If you want to see an array of engaging, attractive artwork during this coming year, you need look no further than the City of Prairie Village. The Prairie Village Arts Council has just announced their ambitious line-up of art shows for next year that include everything from impressionistic landscapes to woven wall-hangings to stunning portraits. For the first time this year many exhibits will be available simultaneously at two locations: the R.G. Endres Gallery at the Prairie Village City Hall and the Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse Gallery at 9100 Nall Ave. The Endres location will continue to serve as the site for opening receptions for the shows, but these evening events have been changed to Wednesdays instead of Fridays. (See below for all show and reception dates and locations.)
The Arts Council will continue to sponsor its two popular juried competitions, the Art of Photography contest held in May and State of the Arts in September. And several new artists will be featured this year, including Susan Richards, who produces weavings with repurposed materials and Shannon Brouk, known for her stunning colorful portraits. Artist Shannon Trevethan, who has served as a juror for the State of the Arts competition, will be displaying her own artwork.
Four of the shows coming this year were originally scheduled for 2020, but were postponed due to the pandemic. These re-scheduled artists include Gloria Gale, Donna Yeager, Debra Payne, and Donna Paul, many of whom produce portraits and impressionistic landscapes with pastels and oils.
Along with sponsoring these art exhibits, the Prairie Village Arts Council will also be holding another Prairie Village Art Walk sometime during the summer. This popular event allows residents to visit selected sculptures throughout the city where the sculptors have provided recorded artist statements available on the Otocast phone app.
The Arts Council will also be sponsoring or participating in the Shooting Stars Gala that recognizes Johnson County high school art students, the Prairie Village Art Show held in June, Villagefest in July, and Jazzfest in September. And to think that all of this will be available in or around the City of Prairie Village.
Prairie Village Arts Council
Nye, meanwhile, has a particularly keen eye for the "fish out of water" photograph: that style of image that makes you realize something is out of place in the most whimsical of ways. Her Trick or Treat With Elvis is a perfect example, and puts me in the mind of early Pop Art that asked us to encounter everyday items or rituals -- in this case, trick or treating -- and see some element of them that was just a bit off.
Charpentier's work is immediately striking, and it is the craftsmanship of the works that truly shines. Glass work has perhaps, post-Chihuly, come to seem excessively floral or decorative: the sort of item everyone's grandmother places on a tall shelf to gather dust and refract the occasional beam. But Charpentier's work gave me one reaction: what?!? As in: how on earth did he do that? Take The Descent, whose roller coaster form seems to defy both gravity and expectations about what glass work can be.
His Celestial Shift, with its astronomical motif and almost Escherian lines and orbits, caused me to linger in place more than any other work in the show.
Meanwhile, Archaic looks like a delightful combination of a Pixar film villain and a tropical insect, and I found myself circling the glass display case in bafflement as to how he had constructed it.
All told, the three artists whose work is showing through January 6 excel in a unifying way: by making us sit up a bit straighter, wondering how you had missed what they are making so very clear right now. It's a tough balancing act for an artist, placing the mundane in an entirely new context and framework, and all three handle it skillfully. Please visit this excellent collection soon!
Through January 8, 2023
R.G. Endres Gallery
Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse
Hard choices, indeed, to select a personal favorite out of the 60-plus pieces on display at the Prairie Village Arts Council's State of the Arts 2022 exhibit.
The arts enthusiasts have spoken though, and the “People’s Choice Award” was awarded to Non Trattati (Blessed be the Fruit) by Katie Wampler for garnering the most votes during the opening week of the show.
And our juror, Shannon Trevethan, Director of the Deines Cultural Center in Russell, Kansas, selected Ursusla Minor's Don't Touch My Hair 4 for the coveted highest award: “Best in Show”.
Ursula Minor is a "self-taught 3D mixed media artist who has always had a love for antique rhinestone jewelry, found objects, and beads. Through her beads, found jewelry, and creation of the piece, Ursula tries to bring out the personality and soul of the piece."(excerpted from Ms. Minor's artist statement.)
"Carol Johnson’s bold use of color, exuberant pattern and expressive style lends a unique twist to both her original painting and her recreations of iconic images. A self-taught artist, Carol's style has been honed over the years. She infuses her figurative art with a passion for the subject, as well as lightheartedness and humor." ~artist statement
John Keeling likes to "capture the essence of [his] subject. [He] seeks out both lost and found edges, intentionally balancing controlled definition to help you see with blurred edges to let you enter. In this way, [he] invites the viewer to join [him]." ~artist statement
- In Common, by Lori Stanziola
- Spring Growth-full, by Jackie Kiernan-Hale
- Raw, by Slater Sousley
- Portrait of a Young Artist (in a Place That Wasn't Real), by Cassaundra Sanderson
- The Unforgiveable Nature of Time, by Jessica Matier
From juror, Shannon Trevethan:
"It was a pleasure and an honor to judge this years Prairie Village State of the Arts. I was delighted to be presented with so many thought provoking, well-executed pieces. As director of an art center and an artist myself, I’ve spent many years analyzing my own work and examining the work of others. This was, however, my first time in the position of judge.
"I approached the selection process with the mindset that the State of the Arts is a reflective statement on the state of the world. I felt this in almost every piece submitted, whether it related to culture, humanity, or the spaces we inhabit. The work selected for this show gave me insight into the artists’ perception and experiences. Some of the work was deeply moving, other pieces were chosen for their beauty, ingenuity, or for their proficient demonstration of artistic process."
Running from now until October 28th, State of the Arts is one of the two juried arts exhibitions currently mounted by the Prairie Village Arts Council. Abstract works, portraits, landscapes, and still life works are on display, along with mosaics, woodcuts and fabric works. The subjects range from lakes to limes, flowers to Fiesta ware. Be sure to go check it out in person!
And remember: All pieces of artwork are for sale! See Barb Fisher at the City Clerk's office about purchase.