February- Lubker Gallery: Aaron Chvatal- Costume Design

Former Fremonter’s Work Takes Center Stage

Feb a gallery 2015 1Costume design—a singularly fantastic occupation that walks the narrow line between actor and audience, glorious on-stage recognition and unrecognized backstage toi­l—fabulous whirlwinds of fittings, fabrics, and fringe, and exhaustingly long hours of quiet historical research in the library. Its appeal is evident, and it hooked Aaron Chvatal at an early age. “The seed was definitely planted by the amazing Fremont High School musicals, to which my parents took me every year from an early age,” says Chvatal. “My mother (retired FHS Art Teacher Melody Chvatal) tells me that even as a young boy, I sat quietly through every musical, enthralled by the spectacle on stage.” Aaron also recalls a trip with his father to see CATS the musical in Omaha to be particularly magical. “You feel rather grand in your assigned seat in an opulently gilded theatre house. Then the lights dim, a hush falls over the audience, and the curtain rises. Suddenly, another world is created, just for you. I always knew I wanted to be a part of that.”

After high school, Aaron chose to pursue costume design in earnest. A BFA in Theatre Arts from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota gave him occasions to explore and expand his talents in costume design. During four years at Hamline, Aaron worked full-time in the costume shop producing any and all looks necessary for the main stage productions. He experienced an industrial sewing machine for the first time and quickly learned to “sew like the wind.” Skills such as draping, pattern-drafting, millinery, and makeup were taught on the job, as well as in the classroom.

After graduation, Aaron turned his search to grad school. The University/Resident Theatre Association is a collection of graduate theatre design schools with professional training courses and affiliated professional theatres. U/RTA holds yearly conferences in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles connecting applicants with programs accepting students. “It was exhilarating and terrifying!” says Chvatal. “You are each given a table–all identical–and you set up your portfolio. Your work is all that speaks for you, and if they like your work, they sign up for an interview slot.

Feb a gallery 2015 2“UMKC was the final choice,” says Aaron, “because of the classes offered, the caliber of the productions done there.” UMKC has a reputation for turning out graduates who know how to draw. One of the first graduate design programs to do so, UMKC requires all students to take live model drawing all 6 semesters. By drawing the human form repeatedly, students eventually gain an instinctual understanding of the body. “It was a huge leap for me, to be able to draw a body from the image in my head, and not have to spend hours searching the internet for a picture I could trace.” Many portraits from these studio sessions are featured in the exhibit, including a few amusing self-portraits. Beyond the art skills, the UMKC graduate degree is in Costume Design AND Technology – teaching students the skills and techniques to construct the garment they have conceived.

Since graduating from UMKC in May 2013, Aaron has worked professionally in theatre full time, first in Kansas City and now in St. Paul, Minnesota. For the last 3 summers, he has travelled to Virginia to participate in the Castleton Opera Festival. Starting as a stitcher, he climbed the ranks to Assistant Costume Shop Manager, Shop Manager, and returned this year as Shop Manager and designed a main stage production. He has also designed/coordinated 5 operas for Opera on the James in Lynchburg, Virginia. It’s his goal to work full-time in opera, travelling around the country (and eventually around the world!) designing glorious period costumes.

B. H. Gehringer Gallery:  Norm Melichar


feb b gallery 2015Norm Melichar, a retired teacher from Millard Public Schools has turned his attention from counseling to creating art. His exhibit Ancient Elements – Masks, Sculpture, Collage and Mixed Media is the focal point in the B. H. Gehringer Gallery in February.

“I am an artist that seems to find beauty in the oddest of places. Dumpsters, highways, discarded materials. I love to give a second life to all of these delightful finds. You may find masks out of a hoe, or sprinkler, as well as using papier-mâché packing material. All of my art encompasses these found treasures,” Melchar said.

The show will highlight the ancient elements of Fire, Water, Air and Earth with a variety of art presentations. There will be masks for each of the elements, along with other whimsical characters hitching a ride in each category. Each mask becomes a “character” with a biography to make you smile, laugh and think.

“It is difficult for me to present art without words, so I often will include poetry or short stories to lead you through the show. There will also be a set of totems, one for each element as well as two large pieces showing the unity of the elements. Sculpture, collages and mixed media will help to finish the tribute to these ancient markers of the universe,” he said.

 The February reception for the Aaron Chvatal, Norm Melichar, and Loft Artist: Agneta Gaines (Weaving/Fiber Arts) exhibits will be:

Friday, Feb 6th, from 5-7 p.m.

Posted in Exhibits, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

January Lubker Gallery: Patrick E. Barton Photography

Barton’s Marine Photography is “See”-Worthy

barton1Water, water everywhere, might be an accurate way to describe the photographic works of Patrick E. Barton.

Barton, a current SCUBA instructor, has been an avid diver for more than fifteen years utilizing his many opportunities to travel to exotic locations to shoot up close and personal with life under the sea.

Through previous design projects, Barton introduced himself to photography. In 2003 he purchased his first Digital SLR and combined that with an order for an underwater housing.

According to Barton, “The process of trying to dive into both arts at one time seemed overwhelming and at many times still does. The rewards are well worth the mind-boggling preparation.”

barton2Barton was born and raised in the Midwest. Most of his training and experience have been derived from working on corporate designs over the last 20 years. His career, to date, has consisted primarily of work with two independent Midwest-based companies. Most recently he is focused on design projects through Barton Visions.

Barton’s experience has allowed him to work on a large variety of projects and produce art in all types of media.

He has exhibited throughout the United States and in Europe.

Patrick is a member of the Ocean Artists Society and a volunteer diver with Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium.

B. H. Gehringer Gallery:  FPS Select Student Work

fpsgalleryBFremont Public Schools Art Specialists, Julie Bristol, Jesse Kiefer and Jenny Trapp bring us a select show of elementary student artwork. These teachers inspire creativity while teaching about artists, the Elements of Art, and the different media and techniques used in the creative process. The students are encouraged to communicate their thoughts and ideas in a style that represents their personal ideals and beliefs. Their work is colorful, delightful and quite insightful!

Also featured this month is portfolio work that was completed during the past fall semester from Cody Wheelock’s Art III/IV class at Fremont High School. Each student was asked to create a series of work based around a theme of his choice. A wide range of themes is present within the class’s body of work, including: brokenness, beauty, equality, social issues, and identity, to just name a few. Students were given the freedom to create work in whatever media they felt strongest in order to best represent their theme. The show includes both three and two-dimensional pieces and media ranging from ceramics and wood to oil paint and graphite drawings. Each student also created a website featuring their work, including a biography page and an artist statement.

 The January reception for the Patrick E. Barton, FPS Students Exhibit, and Loft Artist Anthony Brown (paintings) exhibits will be:

Friday, Jan 9th, from 5-7 p.m.

Posted in Exhibits, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

December Gallery A: Milt Heinrich

Painting a Rich Landscape

Milt Heinrich- Landscape paintingMilt Heinrich, former Chair of the Art Department of Dana College and a long-time friend of the Fremont Area Art Association, will have an exhibition of his recent paintings in Gallery A during the month of December.

His exhibit will focus primarily on the landscape painting that Dr. Heinrich has completed within the past two years. The common thread of these paintings is his interest in capturing and visually framing limited spaces within a larger landscape image. His background in collage and composition is evident in the way he portrays these landscapes.

An opening reception will be held on December 5, from 5-7 p.m. at Gallery 92 West where Dr. Heinrich will offer an introduction to his work during a gallery talk entitled “Another Point of View.”

Gallery B: Marian Students Exhibit

Award Winning Talent

MarianGallery 92 West is once again thrilled to bring artwork created by Omaha Marian High School students. As always, instructors Ashley Thompson and Jeremy Cisco have chosen an excellent showcase of the girls’work, in a variety of media from Marian’s Art I, Art II, Sculpture and Pottery classes.

Marian High School has a renown visual arts program, always taking their students to a high level of creativity and skill, as is proven by their accomplishments in the national Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, the longest running, most prestigious recognition program for creative teens in the United States. The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards are the largest source of scholarships for young artists.


We are sure you will be amazed and delighted by this Gallery B show!

 The December reception for the Milt Heinrich, Marian Students Exhibit, and Loft Artist Dan Minarick (polished Metal Sculpture) exhibits will be:

Friday, Dec 5th, from 5-7 p.m.

Posted in Exhibits, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off

November Gallery A: Meigs Rediscovers the Platte


received_10202818813702761 “Platte Rediscovery,” a photo exhibit by Doug Meigs is dedicated to inspiring critical and historical rediscovery of the Platte River.

Three hundred years ago, the French explorer Bourgmont introduced the Platte River (and Nebraska) to Europe. Bourgmont had arrived at the Mouth of the Platte on June 16, 1714. According to his navigational logs, the Otoe living along the river called it the “Flat Water” the Nibraskier. Today, the river and its original Otoe name define the modern state of Nebraska.

received_10202818813862765Doug Meigs is a freelance journalist and photographer. After four years living in Hong Kong, he returned home to Omaha. His writing and photography has appeared in Omaha Magazine, The Omaha World-Herald, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, China Daily, the South China Morning Post, Indian Country Today Media Network, and various other regional and international media outlets.

Gallery 92 West is pleased to show Doug’s first exhibit in November. Please stop by to see his stunning photography.

Gallery B: The Cellar Dwellers

B1They call themselves “The Cellar Dwellers.” Even though a title as such may evoke images of a troll and Igor, it is quite the contrary. Linda Jorgensen and Melody Chvatal are retired art teachers that met three years ago at the Art Association and started creating pottery in the basement studio. The pair not only create works of art there but are guaranteed one hundred laughs and great inspirational moments with their studio group.

Linda believes “Art is a verb…” She says, “one has to think then carry out the various steps for each piece created. While sometimes, a ‘happy accident’ occurs, most of the time there is a plan.”

Her work consists of highly stylized functional and non-functional pottery, jewelry and collage pieces. Linda focuses on form and proportional balance while creating her work.

B2Melody has focused on her love of clay the last three years since her retirement. Her work is quite varied in style and structure. Many pieces have painted interlocking detailed designs. Some pieces have emphasis on surface texture and others show explorations of colored glass and glaze techniques. Melody’s creative process focuses on the energy that is within the piece and many are developed after the first firing. She enhances the unique properties in each piece, creating one of a kind ware.

Please stop by the Gallery during November to see their wonderful work.

 The November reception for the Doug Meigs, Cellar Dwellers, and Loft Artist: Dave Chleborad exhibits will be Friday, Nov 7th, from 5-7 p.m.

Posted in Exhibits, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off

October Gallery A: Triad (Lori Elliot-Bartle, Travis Apel, Pete Wroblewski)


Omaha’s Triad comes to Gallery

 GalleryA 2A trio of Omaha artists, calling themselves “Triad,” will fill Gallery A with their unique stylings during October.

Lori Elliott-Bartle is a painter and printmaker whose work is marked by saturated, often primary, colors and high contrasts between light and dark.By using simplified, abstracted shapes in her imagery, she hopes to focus attention on essential elements of form, line and shape as well as energy and emotion. In this month’s exhibition, Lori shows selected paintings and relief prints with pieces depicting Nebraska and New Mexico landscapes, the human figure, and several portraits.

GalleryA 1

Sculptor Travis Apel feels that, “Our ancient surroundings—insects, flowers, fallen trees, landforms, the greater cosmos and the anatomy of nature are embedded in the motif of my work. Evolving themes of space, time and circumstance formulate a tendency for my work to have a Neo-Symbolist representation within its conceptual design.”

Travis adds, “I explore concepts and narratives—both philosophical and environmental. My dream is for the viewer to shed apathy regarding the place we live. I invite each visual consumer to remain open to experience a personal, historic moment and take the opportunity to recognize one’s place in guarding our natural habitat, our social habitat, and the individual habitat behind our senses.”

GalleryA3Third is sculptor Pete Wroblewski, who has been producing sculptural work for more than 25 years.

“I started late in sculpture,” he said. Wrobleski took his first sculpture class from Bellevue University while stationed at Offutt Air Force Base.

He soon decided that, “Sculpture was the only way for me to be able to express my vision.” He works primarily in bronze, but has also worked in aluminum, steel and wood.

“Because I do extensive revision of the wax positive I make from a clay beginning, each piece is unique, no copies are made. My work is primarily figurative with various subjects that appeal to me, from mythology, nature, or emotion. I strive to show movement, both subtle and obvious,” he said.

Gallery B: Cody Wheelock

Fremont High School art teacher Cody Wheelock will be displaying his paintings in Gallery B during October.

Wheelock is a classical realist artist who paints and draws in the traditional genres of still life, landscape and figure/portraiture. He graduated from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, in 2010 and completed his Master’s degree in Art Education from Boston University.

WheelockWheelock has exhibited as part of the Art Association’s All Member Show, the Fremont Public Schools Faculty Show and was recently our Loft Artist of the month.



 The reception for the Triad, Cody Wheelock, and Loft Artist: Marjorie exhibits will be Saturday, Oct 4th, from 6-9 p.m.

October Shows are sponsored by:

Sid Dillon

Posted in Exhibits, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off