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New exhibitions opening at the Sandzn Gallery
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Church at Ranchos de Taos by Martha Pettigrew

New exhibitions at the Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery include paintings and sculpture by Del and Martha Pettigrew; wildlife art by Chip Brock; the Prairie Plein-Air Invitational; and the Gallery’s annual Holiday Gift Show. They will be on display from Nov. 6, through Jan. 15, with an opening reception planned from 2 to 4 p.m. on Sunday afternoon, Nov. 6, with Gallery talks beginning at 2:30 p.m. The Sandzén Gallery is located at 401 North First Street in Lindsborg
Strength, Dignity and Serenity features the art of Kearney, Nebraska, artists Del and Martha Pettigrew. Del Pettigrew creates wildlife sculptures and oil paintings. His work is found in private, corporate, museum, municipal, and foreign collections. A sculpture that will be in the exhibition, Earning His Oats, recently won best of show at the Avera Hospital Art Show in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
Martha Pettigrew graduated from the University of Nebraska with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. She served as an illustrator for the State Museum before becoming a professional artist in 1990. She also works in both sculpture and painting and has many accomplishments to her credit. The Pettigrews are also involved in breeding and racing thoroughbred horses since the 1980s.
Painter Chip Brock was born and raised in rural Kansas, developing an early appreciation for area wildlife. In 1993 he received a B.F.A. from Fort Hays State University. While there, he met his wife Kymberli. After remaining in Kansas for several years, the couple and their daughter moved to southeast Idaho, and on to the Mat-Su Valley just outside Wasilla, Alaska.
Brock now works as a fulltime painter and has had work included in many prestigious national exhibitions. He works exclusively with oil paints – striving for a realistic, yet painterly, approach: “My efforts are focused on capturing a unique moment in nature without getting lost in unnecessary detail. I love the texture of paint and want the viewer to enjoy each painting as a beautiful work of art. My primary art goals are to continue to learn and push hard to get even better. I strive to make each new painting my best with the understanding that perfection is always going to be just out of reach.”
The Prairie Plein-Air Inviational will feature many of the most prominent plein-air painters in the Kansas region. Plein-air paintings are essentially works created in the “open air” and are completed on-site. For this exhibition, painter and organizer David Vollbracht of Medicine Lodge invited several of his associates to participate. Each artist was asked to include two or three paintings they had done outside and away from studio confinements. Many reflect the beauty of the diverse Kansas landscape, while others add a human element to the surroundings. Each work demonstrates a keen eye and the careful touch of brush to canvas.
The Gallery’s popular Holiday Gift Show completes the group of new exhibitions. The work of nearly 50 invited artists are represented in the show, along with ceramic pieces from the artists of the Clayworks at Disability Supports in McPherson. Art includes paintings, prints, ceramics, jewelry, sculpture, Swedish-inspired folk art, woodcarvings and mixed media pieces.
The Gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The Gallery is closed on Mondays. Admission is free, with donations appreciated. Docent tours for groups are available by two-week advance appointment with the Gallery. For more information about Birger Sandzén and the Gallery visit the website, call (785) 227-2220.