BUCKHANNON – ART26201 will present “QUIET PLACES”, a solo exhibition by artist Beth Wheeler, on Friday, February 11, 2022, at the Colonial Arts Center’s MIB GALLERY. There will be a special opening reception for artists from 4-8 p.m., and Wheeler will give a special introduction at 5 p.m.
Reservations are recommended for the artist introduction, and they can be emailed to [email protected]
In addition to the opening event on February 11, the MIB GALLERY will be open from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on February 12, 18, 19, 25 and 26 and March 4 and 5.
All events at the MIB GALLERY are free and open to the public. Significant financial assistance for the Colonial Arts Center rehabilitation project was provided by the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture, and History; ART26201; Buckhannon Community Theatre; and the FirstEnergy Foundation.
About Beth Wheeler:
Beth Wheeler grew up in rural Pennsylvania and attended Saint Francis University. She earned an MFA in Art History from West Virginia University and is currently pursuing an MFA in Painting at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Growing up in the woods and mountains, Beth always had a deep love for nature, and landscape imagery was the main subject of her art from an early age. Her paintings depict her interpretations of the places she personally knows and cherishes.
Painting landscapes, for me, is about resolutely engaging with the world around me, developing a greater awareness and appreciation of the places in which I live and travel. To me, being alone in nature often feels sacred, and painting allows me to process and distill those experiences. To paint the scenes that make me reflect and marvel is to extend and interpret these experiences – to recognize the emotional and spiritual importance of these moments; modify and relive through the prism of memory. The process itself strikes me as a metaphor for learning to notice and value the subtleties of life, which only reveal themselves when we step out of the hustle and bustle of our daily routine and allow ourselves to be calm, to be truly present, aware and open.
Conceptually, my work explores the intersections between the experience of nature, the act of creation, and the practice of contemplative spirituality. Technically, I draw inspiration from the traditions of 19th century landscape painting.
The artwork for this exhibit is taken from the landscape surrounding my home in Indiana, Pennsylvania, and my parents’ home in rural Patton, about an hour away. Both are places rich in memory and significance to me, and I am captivated by the timeless and transporting quality of the rolling mountains and abundant pastoral farmland in this region. The work in this exhibition is my attempt to capture the sense of solitude and sanctuary I find while wandering these places, using scale, texture and atmospheric effect to invite viewers into these scenes of simplicity, tranquility and peace.
ART26201 is a non-profit organization whose mission is to “celebrate and promote creative and inspiring opportunities in the Buckhannon community”. For more information about ART26201 projects and how to provide financial or volunteer support, email [email protected] or visit their website at www.ART26201.com.