On view January 27-February 17, 2018
"Red Stripe" by William Counter // Main Gallery
William Counter uses mass media objects — magazines, LP covers, paperback books — as inspiration for paintings. The collection of images offers poetic dialogue, expressing personal and cultural concerns. William has a rural Kansas studio outside of Abilene, and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Kansas City Art Institute.
"Surface Tension: Tibbs Glass Art" by Chad Droegemeier // Boardroom Gallery
Chad Droegemeier has been fascinated with glass art for many years. As a child, his dad worked at Karg Art Glass in Kechi, Kansas, and he would be captivated by the fire, steam, bright colors and loud noices associated with glass blowing. During his senior year at Maize High School, he got an internship at Karg. The elements of process, intuition and timing that glass forces artists to learn have hooked Chad for life.
Chad is a glass blowing instructor at CityArts and teaches elementary school art at Adams Elementary in Wichita. He enjoys helping children navigate their way through adolescence through art and creativity.
"Barns of the Kansas Prairie" by Clyde Engert // Balcony Gallery
Traditional wooden barns were essential to farms from the 1800-1900s providing shelter and food storage for farm animals. Modern technology lessened the need for working livestock, and simple metal structures are replacing the wooden ones. Once common, barns are disappearing due to weather, lack of use and cost of repair. Clyde Engert has traveled more than 240 miles to find barns in various states of repair. He has collected about 30 drawings of these slowly vanishing relics of Kansas farm history.
Clyde began watercolor painting at age 5. Over the years, he has taken to many art forms, including handcrafting a violin, oil painting, making furnitire and restoring and flying aircrafts. He now keeps busy with colored pencil sketching.
"Flowers, Sins, Dogs and Me" by Dan Kirchhefer // Main Hall Gallery
Dan Kirchhefer’s subject matter depicts man’s oldest and most loyal friend, the dog. “Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it is too dark to read,” Dan quotes Groucho Marx. Dan Kirchhefer is a long-time artist with fine arts degrees from the University of Nebraska, the University of Cincinnati and the University of Kansas. He taught drawing and printmaking at Emporia State University and was the assistat curator of prints, drawings and photographs at the Spencer Art Museum in Lawrence, Kansas.
On view February 23-March 24, 2018
"A Still Path" by Rob Compton // Main Gallery
Rob Compton’s paintings continuously explore a means to create works that are meditative and dramatic by looking and an assortment of traditions: Impressionist landscapes, chromatic Abstract Expressionism and Eastern spiritualism, among others.
Rob is primarily a self-taught painter who has learned to paint by stydying past masters and contemporary artists by close observation of the world and by working with the medium on a nearly daily basis. Rob has exhibited in numerous solo and group shows regionally, including a solo exhibition at the Birger Sandzen Memorial Gallery in Lindsborg, Kansas. He has shown in juried competitions around the country, receiving several special recognitions. His works are part of several private collections nationally.
"In My Solitude" by Jan Klassen // Boardroom Gallery
Painting, for Jan Klassen, is about being playful and spontaneous. Jan has fun with the process while experimenting with paint and tools to see what happens. Good or bad isn’t important to her — pleasure is. Jan is a member of Gallery XII and serves on several committees.
"Active Imagination" by Lori Wright // Balcony Gallery
Lori Wright is a visual storyteller, creating real and fictional events to build a narrative that is unique to the viewer. Uing her family as a basis for the subject matter, she tells stories from the viewpoint of a child — curious and adventurous. Lori primarily works in mixed media, drawing and painting, however, she also likes to work with printmaking, photography and found objects. “I never want to feel limited by materials,” Lori said. “I believe the best work is created without limitations of the material.”
Lori is an Associate Professor of Art at Kansas Wesleyan University in Salina, Kansas. She graduated from Emporia State University with a BFA in Photography and from Wichita State University with a MFA in Drawing. Lori is considered a Post Modernist artist whose work focuses on identity and the role that ones’ childhood plays on their adult lives.
"Nature Inspired" by Tracie Lyn Huskamp
Tracie Lyn Huskamp’s artwork aims to draw the human spirit closer to nature’s bounty and beauty. Nature inspires her imagination, and through imagery, she creates pieces that are fantastical yet seem as if they might be entirely possible. Tracie’s mixed media collages are influenced through her observations of the natural world, weaving nature subjects (rendered in painting) with man-made pieces of paper, metal and/or fiber. Each scene is constructed from a longing to chronicle a memory and bring the outdoors in.
Tracie obtained her BFA in Graphic Design from Wichita State University. Her mixed media works received national attention with the release of her book, Nature Inspired. She has appeared on the cover of Somerset Studio Magazine, along with feature articles in various art publications.
On view March 30-April 21, 2018
Off the Wall Silent Art Auction: a fundraiser for the CityArts scholarship program // Main Gallery
Throughout the month of April, CityArts will be hosting “Off the Wall,” a silent art auction to raise funds for the CityArts scholarship program. Pieces from past exhibiting artists will be on view in the Main Gallery. Art enthusiasts will have the opportunity to bid for their favorite pieces during the month-long silent auction.
USD 259 Instructor Art Show // Boardroom & Balcony Galleries
Wichita Public Schools has a long history of supporting art education. The district employs more than 100 visual art teachers. This exhibition represents the work of some of those art professionals whose mission is to teach art and the appreciation of it to our city’s students.
"Trent's Views" by Trent Landreth // Main Hall Gallery
Drawing has always been Trent Landreth’s primary form of entertainment, stress relief and comedic expression. Though severe Autism has left him almost completely cut off verbally from others, his art has inspired, encouraged and educated people around the world. In July 2016, a video of Trent drawing images upside down on his trampoline went viral and has been viewed more than 54 million times.
Trent was diagnosed with severe Autism at the age of 2 and remains virutally non-verbal. Despite his inability to personally communicate his feelings, thoughts and dreams, the emotions expressed in and through his art are unmistakable. From the concerned to the confused to the comedic, “Trent’s View” of the world around him gives the viewer the ability to see everyday things in a new and intriguing way.
On view April 27-May 19, 2018
"No Middle Ground" by Tim Stone // Main Gallery
Tim Stone’s work consists of depicting spaces that are inspired by the ordinary and triggered by the mundane. During his travels last year, Tim took an interest in places that were in the midst of change — places that are moving from established businesses and residences to new, more expensive state-of-the-art facilities. His paintings pay homage to the beauty of the places he visited, but also to unveil the sinister reality of rich and poor in the present day, leaving no room for middle ground.
Tim received his BFA in Painting from Wichita State University. He was accepted to the New York Studio School of Painting, Drawing and Sculpture where he participated in a drawing marathon with Graham Nickson. He currently teaches Basic Design at Bethany College. He was one of 50 artists included in the book Wichita Artists in Their Studios by Sondra Langel and Larry Schwarm.
"Sing in me, oh muse. And through me, tell the story. — Homer" by Denise Irwin // Boardroom Gallery
Vessels accept, contain, protect and preserve the cycle of life. Vessels also constrain and limit. Constrained by the family and the culture in which we live, our ability to see possibilities is limited. A lifelong Kansan, Denise Irwin formerly taught graphic design and foundations of art at Cowley Community College, as well as working at the public radio station, KMUW. Now, she spends all her time in her converted barn studio exploring and experimenting with clay.
"Intermixture" by Robin Valenzuela // Balcony Gallery
Color and texture play an active part in Robin Valenzuela’s artwork. The thick and thin of the paint and the way the surface accepts or denies her trials are what keep her hooked at trying and trying again. Many of her abstract works incorporate illustrative shapes, hard edges and softer random self-forming masses. Her paintings show humor and flippant surprises that entices the viewer.
Robin comes from a creative family who affected her journey of becoming an artist. She holds an associates degree from Garden City Community College and one in Apparel Design & Illustration from Wade College, Dallas. For 15 years, she worked as a graphic designer and pre-press expert for a small printing company. She now works full-time as an artist, artrepeneur and freelance graphic designer. She is an active member with Garden City Arts.
"From Barbara's Bench" by Barbara Vogt // Main Hall Gallery
Barbara Vogt has taught silversmithing and enameling for CityArts since she returned to Wichita in 2000. Barbara enjoys teaching various youth classes and her monthly visits to ARC. While “From Barbara’s Bench” is her first solo exhibition, she shows regularly at CityArts group exhibitions and Lister Studio, including the annual Art Trek in November.
From 1985 to 2000, Barbara lived and worked in Manitou Springs, Colorado. She was on the Board of Directors at Commonwheel Artist’s Co-op, then the manager of Filthy Wilma’s Gallery. She taught enameling and silversmithing at the Colorado Springs Senior Center and helped organize community art events, festivals and fairs in Manitou Springs.
On view May 25-June 23, 2018
"Not to be Seen" by Johnny Sutton // Main Gallery
Johnny Sutton uses photography to bring to the canvas images that haven’t existed in front of the camera lense. His new exhibition at CityArts includes artwork from three different series, the most recent consisting of abstractions based on architecture. Although these were printed in Wichita, most the work was done in Bassano del Grappa, Italy, where Johnny has been living off and on over the past eight years.
Johnny studied sculpture and painting at Wichita State University. After that, he spent his time traveling extensively, with extended stays in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico; Marrakech, Morocco; Athens, Stockholm and Paris. He exhibited paintings through the 1970s and 80s, focusing on fantasy landscapes that often incorporated figures from ancient cultures. He began exhibiting photography in 2000 but still maintained his “painter’s eye.” Rather than documenting objects, he uses subjects as source material to create images of a personal nature and often detaches the original subject matter from the final picture.
"Undiscovered Countries" by Laura Nugent // Boardroom Gallery
Working with a loose idea of pattern and limited color palette, Laura Nugent creates works with insistent rhythm and restrained hues. Her method of layering paint creates depth and allows for accident. Her hand is apparent in each imperfect line that is painted, and her newest works show the tolerance for letting materials speak without correction.
Originally from Rhode Island, Laura graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art and has pursued a career as a full-time artist for more than 15 years. Her work can be found in various private and corporate collections, including The Four Seasons Hotel (Chicago), Pinnacle Bank (Nashville) and Black and Veatch (Kansas City). Laura maintains her studio in Merriam, Kansas and travels extensively to exhibit in juried shows and galleries.
"Cosmic X-Rays" by Trisha Thompson Adams // Balcony Gallery
"Cosmic X-Rays" is a look at ourselves within the universe - to see beyond our own bodies and what roles we play on a larger scale. It is more a reflection and meditative outlook not just on the beauty and intricacies of our genetic makeup, but a look at how similar our anatomy mimics space phenomena.
Trisha Thompson Adams is an artist from Oklahoma who enjoys tiny paintings, anatomy and folklore. In 2011, she graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art from Oklahoma State University. She currently creates oil paintings inspired by the natural world, anatomy and mythology. When not painting, Trisha is recording strange dreams, playing with her cats, stargazing and being barefoot.