The Lassen County Arts Council is displaying watercolor, acrylics, commissions and murals by artist Michael Kerby now through Nov. 27.
According to a statement from the arts council, Kerby was raised in the Sierra Nevada near Yosemite National Park and now resides in Northern California. He finds inspiration for his artwork while hiking and skiing the vast mountain ranges of the Sierra where he feels the special kinship created by living close to the Earth that is so necessary to his artistic vision. Kerby’s concern with humanity’s spiritual bond to the Earth is apparent in his work, which expresses the need to both touch and be touched by the Earth.
“We have a spiritual as well as a physical need for a healthy Earth,” Kerby said. “I try to capture and share the ‘awe’ of a place.”
Working from several photos he has taken, as well as sketches created on location, Kerby combines elements of the area to create a composition that invites the viewer to step in and explore, putting in just enough detail so the viewer’s eye fills in the rest.
“Painting is fun and joyous, bringing pleasure to the creator, as well as expanding the imagination and creativity of the viewer,” Kerby said.
He was encouraged to draw and paint at an early age. Although primarily a “self-taught” artist, he studied at Sierra College and has taken several workshops from renowned artists. His artistic philosophy has been influenced by his travels to the Far East during a tour with the U. S. Coast Guard in the early 70s and by his nearly 30 years service as a wild land firefighter.
Kerby is currently a full-time artist working primarily in watercolor and acrylic, where he continues to explore the possibilities of the mediums in creating what he refers to as “dreamscapes,” feeling that a painting is “a man-made dream produced for those who are awake”.
The public is invited to view Kerby’s artwork during the month of November at the Lassen County Arts Council Cottage Street Gallery.
Featured are original watercolor and acrylic paintings, matted and unframed paintings and prints and gift cards depicting his original paintings.
The galley is open from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. Kerby’s art will be on view through Nov. 27.
For more information, call 257-5222.