Artist turns to oils during recession…

Regional painters exhibit at February art show

Emmeline Elliott

Two regional artists will have their paintings featured at this month’s Double Header art show.

Abstract painters Jennifer White of Sioux Falls and Lacey Lee of Brookings are participating in the Madison Area Arts Council event held Feb. 9 from 7 to 9 p.m. at The BrickHouse Community Arts Center, 106 S.E. 2nd St. Music will be performed by Chad McKinney. The one night event is free and open to the public.

White has been creating artwork for years. She had an interest in drawing in high school and – with the encouragement of her teacher Mr. E. Johnson – moved into ceramics, which she continued to pursue in college. She now considers painting her art form of choice, primarily working with oil on canvas.

Jennifer White

In the summer of 2010, White turned to painting as a means of coping with the struggles her family faced during the recession.

“We had to move to a different state and that’s when the urge to create art took over. I had no control over what was happening to me. I was lost, and my sweet husband bought me some paint and canvas and told me to paint. So that’s what I did,” White said.

Some of her paintings reflect that experience, such as her work titled “Ice Cube Degenerate.”

Jennifer White

“This piece lets the illusion of control slowly disappear like an ice cube melting on a hot rock. That is a feeling most people can relate to,” White said.

White usually works on canvas, but she also paints on nontraditional mediums such as windows, doors, plates, bed sheets and even a satellite dish. She uses materials like sand, wood, cloth, metal, glue and toilet paper to create textures or a sense of depth in her paintings.

“It is that love of clay that feeds the urge to paint something you want to touch. The chunky goodness of dry oil paint on canvas is literal depth,” White said.

Lee is making her second appearance at a Double Header event with this month’s art show. She graduated from the University of South Dakota with a Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in painting in 2008. She earned her teaching certification in 2011 from South Dakota State University.

Lacey Lee

Lee said her recent work has become more expressive. She likes to bring humor and sarcasm to her pieces by adding silly features to her characters.

Lee has commissioned a number of private pieces as a freelance artist, including a five-piece medical series for Avera Weskota Memorial Medical Center in Wessington Springs and was featured in Sioux Falls Woman magazine.

Lacey Lee

MAAC meetings are held the first Thursday of every month at 6 p.m. at The BrickHouse Community Arts Center. Visit us on Facebook for more community art news and events.

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