Visual Artists’ Group

Artists’ Group Monthly Show:  April 2019

Artist of the Month:  Joel Nickel “Back and Forth”

Artist’s Reception:  Sunday, April 21st, 6:00pm

Joel Nickel is our Artist of the Month for April. His work will be exhibited from April 1st through April 30th in our Pioneer Chapel Gallery. In his own words: I work “back and forth” between two media — painting and cloisonné enamel, one sized much larger than the other, though the images all start out small in a sketchbook and find their revised and adapted way onto canvas, paper, or copper. My style is “geometric abstraction” in which I’m aware of the interaction between shapes and colors, usually asymmetrical but seeking balance and harmony. The trick is to find lively interactions between color and form in two dimensions with allusions to gravity, explosion and expansion into an orbital spiritual dimension. What connects almost all of my work is a reliance on the form and meaning of the circle. To be “encircled” is to find oneself embraced in community, as long as the circle has freedom of movement and opens itself to other sizes and shapes, sometimes like little balls in the hands of a juggler, but still bouncing along the road of life (think hula hoops, balloons, and ball games). My work grows out of training in craft (hands on work with metal and wood) and an interest in art history. Visual art, when it works well, creates an environment of depth and mystery that enhances life and welcomes diversity and innovation … new ways of looking at life that are inclusive, deeply human, and therapeutic. Art moves back and forth, between what we know and can easily identify and that which is new and anticipatory, begging for patient appreciation and mature contemplation. I like to think of the labor that goes into artmaking (artWORK!) as an energy gift that I receive only to give away in my art forms that become an offering for others to receive with enjoyment. Some of it is even wearable, which can turn persons into walking art exhibits. Lookin’ good …