Museum spotlights locals

Published 11:08 am Thursday, February 20, 2014

A photograph from Amy Lingle’s exhibit “Everyday.” (Submitted photo)

A photograph from Amy Lingle’s exhibit “Everyday.” (Submitted photo)

BUCHANAN — Every six weeks or so, visitors to the Buchanan Art Center can expect to find a fresh crop of art in the museum’s three galleries and display cases.

This month is no exception. Right on schedule, the art center is in the process of packing up its current exhibits and making ready for a new show that heralds the coming of spring with an abundance of color.

“There are going to be a lot of interesting pieces,” said Janet Flahaven-Law, executive director of the Buchanan Art Center. “There is a wide variety in this show.”

The show features the work of four locally-based artists: Howard Scott, Amy Lingle, Richard Loose and Neil Benham. Working in various media and with differing styles, the artists will present pieces that evoke a variety of thoughts and emotions.

“This will be a very eclectic collection,” Flahaven-Law said.

In the main gallery, the work of Howard Scott will be displayed in an exhibit entitled “Imaginative Cartography.” Scott uses watercolors to paint a humorous portrait of our world. Scott credits himself for always trying to bring laughter into the lives of those around him.

“There will be a lot to look at,” Flahaven-Law said. “He uses a lot of humor, word-play and visual gags in his pieces.”

Based in northern Indiana, Scott is a member of the Northern Indiana Artists Inc., the Saint Joe Valley Watercolor Society, and the Indiana Watercolor Society. He has been exhibiting his work since 1975, with pieces in galleries as far away as Bermuda and one-man exhibits as close as Andrews University.

Amy Lingle’s work, on the other hand, utilizes the medium of large-scale photography to present viewers with details that would be overlooked in smaller pieces.

Born and raised in Southwest Michigan, Lingle earned a degree in photography from the Art Institute of Pittsburg. Inspired by the work of Ansel Adams and Clyde Butcher, Lingle’s exhibit, “Everyday,” invites viewers to see the world with fresh eyes every day, just as she strives to see the world around her in an ever-evolving way.

Richard Loose, also with ties to southwest Michigan, draws his inspiration from nature as well. Working in mixed media, he presents his memories of the animals he encountered during his time in the Western states of Montana, Utah and Wyoming.

His exhibit, “Living in a Dream World,” affords viewers with a window into the remote world that he came to love as he photographed moose, bear, cougar and deer against a backdrop so different from his native Niles.

“He has never shown much,” Flahaven-Law said, “but he has some beautiful, soft pictures from his time out west that we’ll have in the back gallery.”

Finally, the turned wooden bowls and plates of Neil Benham will be on display in the museum’s cases. Using found logs, Benham explores the simultaneous constancy and chaos of his natural surroundings.

“Benham has several pieces in our gift shop, and he is very proficient at that art,” Flahaven-Law said.

Benham’s exhibit, “Inner Beauty of a Tree,” is the product of nine years of working in the medium. Having taken lessons on how to turn wood bowls on a lathe in 2006, Benham fell in love with the process.

“I’m constantly amazed at both the sameness of each turned piece and yet the uniqueness of the same pieces,” Benham said.

Visitors to the Buchanan Art Center, located at 117 W. Front St., can get their first peek at the new exhibits on Feb. 26, and an opening reception will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. on March 2. The artwork will continue on display through April 19.