Local paintings land at airport

November 07, 2004|EMILY BURTON

JUNCTION CITY - After 10 minutes of peering closely at A. Jack May's painting, searching in vain for the 11 Kentucky critters he challenges people to find, only observers in on May's joke still find it humorous.

There are technically only nine animals in the scene, May explains. Numbers 10 and 11, the doe and her fawn, have since wandered off to feed elsewhere Saturday morning, he said with a guilty smile. But they'll be back later.

May's humor on canvas is one piece of local artwork that can be found in Boyle County's first fly-through gallery, of sorts. The lobby of Stuart Powell Air Field is now sans the tough-guy portraits of fighter jets and instead houses framed works of windswept pastels and thick acrylic paintings by local artists.

The new display opened Saturday and features the talents of the artists' support group, Gathering Artists. The display will run through December, at which time new works will be circulated.


"This is new for us. We thought it could be just another venue for local artists," said Terry Bailey, who operates the airport.

Bailey and his wife, Michele, saw local art displayed at Two Roads Cafe and thought why not try it at the airport. They first contacted Ann Nichols of the Danville-Boyle County Arts Commission with their idea.

"I just thought that was such a positive step for our community," Nichols said.

Artists appreciate new venue

Artists circulating among the lobby displays said they appreciated the new venue. It gives them a chance to show the steady airport traffic a glimpse of their region from a different perspective.

"I think art is an exhibit of our appreciation for our surroundings. I think artists see things differently," May said.

Diane Carey believes supporting local artists and their work helps preserve a changing town. Before old barns are torn down or derelict churches razed, Carey captures their image.

"I think art preserves things that may disappear some day," she said. "I think artists collect memories."

Their display of rendered memories range from watercolor beach houses to the sea-tossed beaches of Jamaica. Nichols said the airport is a great place to show off the local art talent, "not only for those of us who live here, but the airport gets a lot of traffic, both national and international. So this is a real good venue, I believe. And I hope some artists can turn some sales here."

The Baileys said they plan to continue what was started on a whim and consistently have works displayed in their lobby.

"We just like to have the house for them. We enjoy the art quite a bit," Terry Bailey said.

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