The opening reception of the 2012 "Quintessential Kenai" art exhibit at the Kenai Visitors & Cultural Center (KVCC) January 6th was a huge success. The show which will be on display through February is a tribute to the established working artists of the upper Kenai Peninsula according to KVCC executive director Natasha Ala, "We are blessed with some enormously talented artists in this area ad challenged by limited exhibition opportunities for our artists. With this exhibit, the KVCC pays tribute to the brave souls who continue, against all odds and challenges, to produce work of consistent quality and excellence. I see this exhibit as a time capsule with an inventory of the art being produced at this time and place in Kenai. We have created portraits of each artist as a way of introducing them to our visitors and as a way to document this jamboree. We chose the theme Quintessential Kenai because it speaks to the pure and essential essence of who our local artists are and to the work that they do as artists here on the Kenai," said Ala.
James Adcox is the new director of membership and advertising and is an artist who recently moved to the Kenai from Nome, Alaska where he had lived since 2005. Adcox's work focuses on portraiture, still life, and landscape. He as a great talent for capturing the essence of what his subject is feeling at the moment, "I studied at UAF and have had great teachers who have shed light on capturing personalities and I believe that if you know the person you are painting you are better able to capture them on canvas," said Adcox, who is busy putting together the 2012 Visitors Guide.
One of the pieces on display at the show has been purchased by the Rasmussen Contemporary Fine Art Bank for permanent display in Anchorage. The piece by Ken Green of Cooper Landing known as "Salmon Television" is unique indeed and a construct of TV parts which Green describes as full of whimsical fancy.
"3 Part Salmon" an original by Chris Jenness of Nikiski is the detail from his published children's book "Sammy Goes Home." Chris has established himself in the community, known both for his graphic design and fine art, having participated in numerous group and solo shows throughout Alaska. Another unique piece on display by Zirrus VanDevere is called "Layer of Life," and is like opening the never ending doors of ones mind and memories of life. Born in and raised in upper state New York VanDevere now serves KVCC as director of programs and exhibits and says, "I feel this show takes us closer to the day when the entire Kenai Peninsula is recognized as a vibrant and productive arts community." Quintessential Kenai will be open during regular hours through the end of February at the Kenai Visitors & Cultural Center and many of the pieces are for sale. For more information contact KVCC at 283-1991.