Denver, CO, December 7-29
This story was featured in the December 2012 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Order the Southwest Art magazine December 2012 print edition here, or purchase the Southwest Art magazine December 2012 digital download here. Or simply subscribe to Southwest Art magazine and never miss a story!
Art lovers and passionate collectors can count on the annual miniatures show at Abend Gallery to offer a wide variety of artworks at reasonable prices. This year’s presentation is no exception. Gallery owner Christine Serr says she expects about 500 small works by 100 artists to be on view during the holiday season. The show opens with a reception for the artists on Friday, December 7, from 5 to 9 p.m. As usual, the artistic styles on display run the gamut from tight realism to loose expressionism, and subject matter includes landscapes, still lifes, figures, and more.
Pamela Poll, a pastelist from Colorado, is one of this year’s participating artists. She paints in a classical style and emphasizes light and shadow to define form. When her husband recently brought home two eggplants as a gift from a co-worker’s garden, Poll says she decided to make a painting instead of a casserole. She titled the resulting still life EGGPLANT DUO, and it is included in the miniatures show. “The eggplants were perfect, with no blemishes and incredible color,” Poll says. “I thought the simple, contemporary white bowl complemented their elegant forms.”
Another Coloradan, John K. Harrell, found inspiration for his miniature landscape far from his Denver studio. FLOATING MAGIC took root in his imagination on a recent trip to Provincetown, MA, a seaside retreat on the tip of Cape Cod. “It was just about sunset, and all the boats were tethered and bathed in sunlight,” Harrell says. “I haven’t spent much time in that part of the country, so this was a magical adventure.”
Show participant John Roush likes to joke that as a native of Kansas who now lives in Missouri, almost any scene besides grass and flatlands grabs his attention. Although his work is primarily landscapes, he also enjoys incorporating roads and architectural elements into his scenes. The coast of Maine often serves as source material, and, on occasion, Roush says he will even paint a Kansas cornfield. For the past several years, he has traveled to the Rocky Mountain region to paint near the ski resort of Breckenridge. His landscape COLORADO BLUE depicts the Snake River just east of Frisco, a small town not far from Breckenridge. The morning sun provided backlighting as well as a glare effect on the running water. “The aspens and willows in the area were boasting their fall colors, but I played down the foliage to give the river top billing,” Roush says.
As a child, Denver painter Elsa Sroka often watched her father sketch interesting houses while he dreamed about the residence that he would build one day. Sroka says her father, a professor of Italian and French at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, had a great appreciation for and obsession with beautiful things, including architecture. Her miniature in the gallery show, A DIFFERENT HOUSE, was inspired by childhood memories of her father’s passion. “When I start a painting, sometimes I have a specific intention, but many times my early influences and subconscious inspirations appear on my canvases in the form of architectural structures,” Sroka says. —Bonnie Gangelhoff
Featured in the December 2012 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
Southwest Art magazine December 2012 digital download
Southwest Art magazine December 2012 print edition
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