about the exhibit
West Nebraska Arts Center, with the support of the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment, is pleased to present a duo art exhibition, Bill and Gretchen Peters of Gering, in the Main Gallery. On exhibit there will be black and white photography as well as color photography, colored pencils and mixed media, in landscapes, buildings, still life and florals.
Executive Director, Michele Denton, “All-time favorites, Bill and Gretchen Peters are combining their talents for the long-awaited show, this will be a show of high caliber, and I am excited to see their artwork.”.
There will be an opening reception on Thursday, December 6th from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. we will serve wine and hors d’ oeuvres. Gallery receptions and exhibits are always free and open to the public and everyone is welcome. Peters art exhibit will run through Sunday, December 30th..
Bill Peters – Biography – Artist Statement
Bill Peters graduated from the University of Nebraska Lincoln and then attended law school in Lincoln before beginning the practice of law. He has an office in Gering. He has been a member of the West Nebraska Arts Center Board of Directors, and the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Midwest Theater since its founding. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Oregon Trail Days Association. In addition to participating in the International Food Fair event, he keeps OTD’s 1932 Ford truck ready for duties during Oregon Trail Day. He has recently joined the group working toward the construction and expansion of the Gering Public Library.
Bill served two terms as county commissioner for Scotts Bluff County where he served on the Board of the Panhandle Mental Health, the Board of Panhandle Community Action Agency, the Gering Flood Control District, Scotts Bluff County Lottery Committee, Twin City Development and the County Board of Correction.
He was served on the Governor’s Air Transportation Task Force, the Nebraska Environmental Control Council, Private Industry Council of the Nebraska Job Training Program and the Board of Advances Emergency Medical Care.
Bill Peters fascination with photography goes back to childhood days when he got the infrequent chance to use his father’s Argus C3 camera to take Kodachrome slides of family travels in Europe. He still has that camera.
One of the first things he did after buying a house in Gering was to build a darkroom where many, many hours were spent learning the craft of developing film and the art of printing. The darkroom does not have a clock and as a result, frequently printing sessions too often ended in the early hours of the morning.
Elevators, the castles of the plains, have a special fascination and as a result there are more than a few grain elevator pictures in both negative and digital form in his files. Like the cathedrals and castles of Europe, elevators change as the sun strikes pipes, stacks, guy wires and storage bins as the day goes by. This presents a changing view all of the time.
Another subject he finds fascinating is railroads, so there are regular trips to narrow gauge railroads such as the Cumbres & Toltec Narrow Gauge in New Mexico, Durango and Silverton in Colorado and the standard gauge Union Pacific in Cheyenne. When one of their restored steamers heads east from Cheyenne, Bill often grabs his camera and waits for the perfect shot along the rails.
Gretchen Peters – Biography – Artist Statement
Gretchen Peters is an advocate for the arts. She volunteers for the arts, makes art and teaches art. She taught art at Gering High School for 35 years and now makes art derived from her surroundings using colored pencil as the medium. Her students received many awards for their creativity and Gretchen has received numerous awards for her teaching and drawing skills. Her work is in numerous collections across the country.
She serves on the boards of Theatre West, Oregon Trail Days committees, and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment Advisory Council. Gretchen’s pervious board work includes: Nebraska Arts Council, Humanities Nebraska, Judicial Nominating Commission, West Nebraska Arts Center, Nebraskans for the Arts, Nebraska State Historical Society.
Gretchen earned degrees at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Chadron State College. She works and resides in Gering, Nebraska.
There is something about hanging art on a wall in your house. It reflects who you are, what you’re interested in, what you see as beautiful or provocative. It can hang there for a really long time, or just a while. It is part of the whole space. There’s the furniture and rugs and books but when the art goes up, it makes the space come to life, it makes the soul.
Appreciating and learning about visual art, and all the arts, can be a lifetime exploration. Living with art and seeking out art makes us all more interested and more interesting. It’s for everybody.
To make it possible for everybody, it’s important to teach little kids about art so they can make their own creative choices about what goes up on their walls, or the sounds that go in their ears or the sights on their screens. It is so important to educate the whole child, the whole human being.
As for the way I make art, I work with nature’s forms, making representational pencil drawings in blocks of color and movement. Like Georgian O’Keeffe’s floral explorations, I am interested in shapes of color that travel the eye on the page. And then adding light and shadow to shift over those surfaces to build depth and interest.
We wish to thank Platte Valley Companies, the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment for their continued support of West Nebraska Arts Center.
Special thanks to:
Vic Bentley, Jan Durnin, Vicki Schmitt, Mary Hunt, Amaya Nightwalker, Judith Moore and Cheryl Wilkinson for their assistance during installation. Thank you the North Platte Valley Artist Guild for providing food for the opening reception.
The West Nebraska Arts Center is a cultural non-profit organization committed to education, awareness and excellence in the arts, serving the North Platte Valley Region. WNAC is located at 106 East 18th Street in Scottsbluff, NE. Visit the Arts Center’s website, www.thewnac.com or find us on Facebook to learn more. 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.