The Road To “Rivers”
New in our Gallery is a series of pieces from 3 artists who came together to create “Rivers.” It has been a process of love over the years to get these final pieces. We have been talking with these artists and want to give you a behind the scenes look at this amazing exhibit currently in our gallery.
For Lori Elliott-Bartle, Marcia Joffe-Bouska, and Tom Quest, art has been a lifelong journey. All three have talked about their fascination and love of art as children and how art has really become a part of them today. For Tom it started with wood and glue, for Lori it was watercolors, and for Marcia, it was the idea of working with her hands to create something new.
We asked the artists what lead them to the theme of “Rivers.” It all started with an exhibit the three had in Omaha at the Artists’ Cooperative Gallery. They wanted to do a collaborative piece that of which had “never been done at the co-op.” According to Marcia, they considered a few themes before finally settling on “Rivers.”
“Most specifically for our first collaborative piece: the Missouri River. Aside from the many associations, rich symbolism, and the metaphors possible with this theme, perhaps originally we selected this because of our physical location: Tom and Lori live in Omaha, and I live across the river in Council Bluffs.”
This first collaboration was titled, “Rivers, Roads, and Remains” and is what lead to what you can currently see in our gallery today. In 2017 they had the opportunity to do an exhibit at the Omaha Public Library’s downtown gallery. They used this opportunity to expand the piece and the 23-foot-long “River” was born. According to Lori, they have worked over the past year to add new pieces, expand the original one, and create something that is double in size. That is what you will see in the NAC Gallery.
“The ideas that link all the collaborative pieces are based in appreciating history, understanding particular places, mining memory and exploring ways all those aspects shape identity and experience.”
To all three artists, art is something fundamental that teaches more than the skills to create art but teaches people how to think creatively, develop problem-solving skills, and how to use their imagination in everyday life. To them, the arts offer a way to truly live life to the fullest.
To see this exhibit stop by the Norfolk Arts Center today!