From a press release:
KEAG Gallery, 414 Grand Avenue in Laramie, announces a closing reception for three Pinedale artists this Friday, May 14, from 6-8 p.m. Join artists Sue Sommers, David K. Klarén and JB Bond to view and discuss their work.
Wendy Bredehoft, the curator of the exhibit notes that “Sue, David and JB know each other well and often discuss art making processes and presentation with each other. While each has a unique visual perspective, I believe the work is a strong representation of contemporary art about the west, based upon their imagery and/or the materials they use.”
Sue Sommers lives on a cattle ranch in the Upper Green River Valley near Pinedale, Wyoming. She received her BFA in Printmaking at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and her MFA in Painting at the University of Wyoming. Her work has been exhibited in many group shows nationally and she has had solo shows in the last few years in Jackson, Rock Springs, and Cheyenne.
She is deeply inspired by the state’s monumental topography, and says: “The essence of a landscape painting consists of color and light. Everything else – depth, motion, texture, composition – comes from the effects of color and light as they are conveyed by the paint. I want to reduce the specific experience of western landscape to color and light, so that anyone who enjoys color may absorb it. With this goal in mind, I go out into the landscape to observe, commit an especially striking ‘color swatch’ to memory, and bring it back to the studio. I don’t use a camera, just my eyes and my brain. From each particular ‘color chip’ of a time and place, I create a painting that replicates that experience.”
David Klarén can be found working at Dire Wolf Studios, which he founded in 1994 in Pinedale. He can also be seen around town working as a co-chair for the Pinedale Arts Council. He received his BA in Painting, Sculpture, Metalsmithing from Montana State University and his MFA in Sculpture from Virginia Commonwealth University. He has exhibited widely and his work is part of many private collections.
Pondhawk is one of a new series of large graphite drawings that incorporate intense mark-making in the background contrasted with a silhouetted image – in this case – a dragonfly. The size of the piece is remarkable. It is as if the viewer is looking at a magnified image under the lens of a telescope.
JB Bond is a contemporary blacksmith using both traditional and modern tools and techniques.
He works intuitively, allowing the work to progress and develop throughout the forging and fabrication process. He recycles found and used materials for constructing these relief sculptures. His choice of materials includes stainless steel, carbon or mild steel, aluminum, bronze and copper. He uses hand forging and power hammer techniques to achieve the various shape and textural qualities within the work. Surface coloring is attained through the traditional forging process and various oxidizing heat treatments. From traditional blacksmithing come intriguing contemporary images that focus the viewer’s eye on shape and form and texture. He laughs when he talks about showing up at horse shoeing gatherings, and “everyone just sort of scratches their head and wonders what the heck I’m doing here."