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about the exhibit

The 2019 Old West Balloon Fest Art Exhibit highlights the artistic value of regional artwork and its connection to the Panhandle through celebrations. The contest is open to all in the Panhandle Valley, styles and techniques which may include photographs & artwork of hot air balloons and/or of the Western Nebraska region.  

 Submissions were accepted from of all ages and skill levels. The contest is meant to highlight the artistic value of the photographic medium as well as promote the Old West Balloon Fest event. We also welcome artists of other mediums. We wanted to encompass several styles that showcase the North Platte Valley region.

 There are two categories: photography and other mediums. We have a total of 6 awards given. For photography there is Adult Best of Show, Adult Honorable Mention, Youth Best of Show, Youth Honorable Mention. In other mediums we will award Adult Best of Show and Adult Honorable Mention. The judge for this exhibit will be Rod Clause.

 Rodney Clause is a Gering native. He graduated from Chardon State College with a BA in Studio Art, and a  BS in Art Education K-12. He also received his MFA in Sculpture and minor in ceramics from Fort Hays State University. His work experience includes bronze foundries, teaching community ceramic classes and being a professor at Chadron State College. Currently Clause owns and operates Der Topfer Gallery and Studio located in Scottsbluff. At this location Clause offers ceramic classes.

Photography Adult Best of Show goes to Charlotte Ingram, Hare & Hound Race. “Balance, movement allows the viewer to take a ride to the other side,” says Clause.

Photography Adult Honorable Mention goes to Doris Holloway, The Race is On. “ This photo has captured a moment in time and the viewer becomes part of that moment.”

Photography Youth Honorable Mention goes to Tiara Lewellen, Floating in the Country. “ The composition of this photo gives the viewer the feeling of flight and solitude. Movement from left to right again makes the viewer search for hidden stories.

Photography Youth Best of Show goes to Tiara Lewellen, Fired Up. “This photo with it’s geometric shapes and organic fire invites the viewer to take a ride and experience the power of wind and fire.”   

Other Mediums Adult Best of Show goes to Mary Hunt, Dance of the Royals (Western Kingbirds). “ The movement and direction of the birds allow the viewer to become part of the dance. The halo circles the two birds which gives a sense of unity.

Other Mediums Adult Honorable Mention goes to Richard Meter Wind Spinner. “Movement without movement. This sculpture is waiting for the wind.”

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The Old West Balloon Fest Exhibit can be viewed Thursday, June 27th – July 28th, 2019.  NOTE: WNAC will be closed July 4th – 5th for the holiday. Visit the gallery Tuesday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. We are closed Mondays. Gallery admission is FREE and open to the public.                 

special thanks

 A special thanks to Vic Bentley, Vicki Schmitt, Jan Durnin, for prepping the gallery, Mary Hunt and Michele Denton for installation of this exhibit, and the WNAC Board of Directors and for supplying food and refreshments for the reception table.  Thank you also to our sponsor Century 21.

 Sponsored by:



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The Nebraska Arts Council, a state agency, has supported this program through its matching grants program funded by the Nebraska Legislature, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment.  Visit www.nebraskaartscouncil.org for information on how the Nebraska Arts Council can assist your organization, or how you can support the Nebraska Cultural Endowment.

The West Nebraska Arts Center is a 501c3 cultural non-profit organization committed to education, awareness and excellence in the arts, serving the North Platte Valley Region.  WNAC is located at the corner of 1st Avenue and 18th Street in Scottsbluff, NE.  Visit the gallery free of charge Tuesday through Friday 9 to 5, Weekends from 1 to 5.  www.thewnac.com. or find us on Facebook.