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Works by the members of Lakeland College's art faculty will be the focus of the next show at the Bradley Gallery.
A reception to open the show, which will feature work by Denise Presnell-Weidner, William Weidner, Pat Robison and Mark Weber, is set for Thursday, Jan. 18, beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the Bradley Gallery, located in the Bradley Fine Arts Building on Lakeland's campus.
The faculty art show will be on display until Feb. 22. The Bradley Gallery is open from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Friday. Attendance at the reception and admittance to the Gallery are both free and open to the public.
The husband-wife duo of William Weidner and Denise Presnell-Weidner, both associate professors of art, have taught at Lakeland and been co-directors of the Bradley Gallery since 1989. They are accomplished professional artists in addition to their duties at the college.
Weber works for Graphic Composition, Inc., as manager of creative services and sales. He is an adjunct instructor for Lakeland, teaching graphic communications and illustration. His work in the show represents commercial projects he has worked on over the past two years.
Robison, who is also an adjunct instructor teaching three-dimensional design this semester, is owner and operator of Two Fish Gallery in Elkhart Lake.
Weidner, whose work is on display in the Dean Jensen Gallery in Milwaukee as well as galleries in Madison and Tokyo, said his work in this show will demonstrate the somewhat recent shift in his approach to his work.
"With the exception of the occasional drawing from life, usually of musicians, in the past few years my work has swung far away from the traditional, representational art form that dominated it for decades," he said. "This thing we call art is made of many components, among them creativity. Along came an increasingly strong desire to push the creative component to the forefront of my artistic output.
"My goal is to produce works that stimulate the imagination of the viewer with original, entertaining and thought provoking compositions. I invite you to see if that has occurred."
Known for her beautiful landscape paintings, Presnell-Weidner said the rejection of her work from a high-profile gallery pushed her to further develop her talents - and she found direction outside the art studio.
"In the meantime, life away from the studio had me painting a house, taking classes to develop my computer design skills for my teaching position, as well as raising two teenagers," she said. "As it turns out, it was life away from the studio that directed me towards new ideas for my artwork.
"Concepts from digital design - like layering and objects and color manipulation - began to seep into my mind. Picking up color swatches for house painting developed into an approach in my designing process that involves far more pre-planning before picking up a paintbrush than ever before. I began to spend far more time with the concept of the work, than in making the work itself."
Presnell-Weidner said her approach is still a work in progress.
"I only know that I feel the need to continue to take risks that may displease gallery directors and disappoint patrons who always believed I would paint the same landscape over and over again," she said. "My goal is to continue to create paintings that raise a question, rather than give an answer. And it is especially important to me that as I view my own work - I see the questions, not the answers."
Her work is on display in a number of galleries throughout the Midwest including the Mary Bell Galleries in Chicago and the Grace Chosy Gallery in Madison.
Click to view photo gallery.