Color is a power which directly influences the soul."
Color is one of the most potent elements found in nature. An element of light and psychology, color is used in cultures worldwide and throughout history to forge connections with the universe. There is a strange mystifying relationship between science, art, and color manifested by artist Roger Feldhans.
Known too many as "The Tie-Dye Guy," Roger Feldhans has been working with color, light, or cinematography since 1976. The title, Color Bomb, references the amount of color infused into his work and how he employs this element with explosive force and energy, with a high interest in seeing something new. His love of color can be traced back to an encounter in 5th-grade art, where his teacher exposed his young students to the world of tie-dye.
Roger's love of tie-dye allowed him to travel around the world and share his skills with many. Recently, his love of color can be seen in his photographs where he creates tie-dye effects in space captured only by the aid of a shutter and lens - called "Painting with light." This process was first explored by artist Pablo Picasso in collaboration with Life Photographer Gjon Mili. Roger found inspiration in this work by Picasso and pushed the medium to produce dimensional images of color, light, and form. These images are color bombs of light striking through space frozen in time by the click of a camera shutter.
Being a self-taught artist, Roger is more like a scientist experimenting with color, light, time, and space. As a photo-quantum-colorist, Roger is not afraid to try something new. He has invented and built many of the tools he uses for his light painting, often collaborating with others to perfect a device.
Colors and patterns seen through the eye of a camera are used to feed his thirst for visual exploration. Roger invites the viewer to see the world as he sees it as an open experiment full of possibilities and simple wonders. Viewers can experience a life lived in full color and exploding with possibilities.
People and Places
March 27 - May 8, 2021
"Every place, every person has a story to tell. As artists, our mission is to tell that story - not as journalist, but more as poets.”
I spent the majority of my life painting and creating art. My favorite medium is watercolor for its magical qualities. Edgar Whitney, the founder of the modern day watercolor movement, said "watercolor does what we cannot do," meaning there is a quality of unpredictability about it, no matter how adept one becomes with the medium. An artist's ability to let go and relinquish control over their creations allows for wonderful and sometimes extraordinary results.
In my creative process, I invite a connection to divine light, which the nineteenth-century poet William Blake called "Peculiar Light." Blake believed that true freedom was based on the expression of each individual's internal radiance. By connecting to my inner light, I create in an attitude of oneness and unity that connects us all. I have found watercolor to be the best medium for the light radiance that I embody in my work.
When my mother, Patty Nation Fisher, of Erie, Kansas passed away, I inherited a large cache of old family photos and was immediately struck with the idea of bringing my relatives “back to life.” At the time, it was a way for me to honor my mother and to keep the family memories alive. The photos became an invitation to merge my art with my love of family, history, and storytelling. I painted their spiritual light with an aura of rainbow colors, to create an etheric atmosphere. At the same time, showcasing their period clothes, beautifully patterned dresses, boots, hats and cars.
As I began to interpret these old family photographs into paintings, a dialogue of sorts was begun with my ancestors. Their stories are published in a book accompanying the show. My great, great grandparents, Samson and Nancy Nation with their family, homesteaded in Doniphan County, Kansas, in 1860, via covered wagon from Polk City, Iowa. His brother, David, my third great uncle, was married to the once infamous, Carry A. Nation.
My ancestors bring to mind Garrison Keillor’s phrase, “all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average”. Please enjoy getting to know my spunky, maternal grandmother, Anna Stubblefield Nation. Follow her life as a young girl living on the farm, through her marriage to her childhood sweetheart, Charlie Nation, and her life as a widow. If you see your family in mine, please join me in reconnecting and honoring those who came before.
Creating Unity: A Centennial Celebration
Works by Women Artists from 1890-Present from the Blanden Permanent Collection
January - December 30, 2021
About the Exhibit
Art inspires us to visit the concept of “Unity” and see ourselves as part of a bigger Universe.
- Leni Kae
Significant strength centers on unity. The universe is a perfect example of this strength. As we look out into the cosmos, everything seems to be in its place, doing what everything should be doing, harmony in the sky. As humans, there has always been a fascination with the stars and their steadfast qualities. On earth, we try to find and establish unity and order inspired by the universe. As human culture developed the concept of order/unity, this focus has changed history, art, and much more.
In this exhibit, the Blanden invites visitors to explore the concept of unity in multiple ways: Unity as a principle of art and design, Unity in the context of honoring the combined effort by American women that fought for a voice in Democracy, and unity as the collective creative vision of women artists.
Unity, as a principle of art, refers to how parts of artwork work together, the "Gestalt" – or the whole. Artists accomplish this whole through working and understanding the mechanisms of art. These mechanisms are the elements and principles, how they interact with each other, and the viewer's perception of the interaction. Unity, as it relates to history and creative output, has its roots in this basic understanding of the whole working together for a creative outcome.
This year America unites with celebrating American women that fought for a change and struggled to have a voice and input on US governance. Starting with the Progressive movement in 1890, American women rallied together to reform society and politics. The main objectives of this group were to eliminate problems caused by industry, urban living, immigration, and political corruption. The group's triumph came on August 18, 1920, with the signing of the 19th Constitutional Amendment. Unifying under a single voice is a powerful device used to accomplish great things and provides clear perceptions.
This exhibit showcases women artists whose works have been collected over the years and preserved in the Blanden Permanent Collection. By exclusively featuring women artists spanning centuries, subjects, and mediums, their works display a unified change in perceptions of an art world dominated by male artists. Museums all over the world are focusing on highlighting great women artists to rewrite the narrative, pulling back the years of darkness, and submitting to the world stage great artists.
Unity is accomplished in many ways. Within the setting of history and visual art, The Blanden's presentation offers engaging narratives and discourse which frame an environment of learning and understanding. At the heart of this simple understanding and perception is a connection to a powerful universe and one another.
Additional information forthcoming for the following:
People and Places - East Gallery March 27 - May 8, 2021
Color Bomb! - Second Floor Gallery March 20 - May 15, 2021
War in Ukraine - East Gallery, May 22 - August 7, 2021
It's Not About Me - Second Floor Gallery May 29 - July 24, 2021