These artists got their start at Brainerd High School, and those classes launched careers or lifelong hobbies in the arts. But one notable thing has changed since they graduated.
"One student called me up and said, 'Do you think I should show in the exhibit?' and I said, 'Sure,'" said curator Evelyn Matthies, who came up with the idea for the exhibit last spring along with Kent Montgomery, another Franklin Arts Center artist. "And he said, 'Am I gonna be graded?'"
Forty BHS graduates will show their work at the Alumni Art Exhibition, which opens at 10 a.m. Tuesday in Gallery 119 at the Franklin. And, no, they won't be graded.
"Cat in the Act," digital photography by 1966 graduate Lorraine Embretson, will be among the work on display in the Brainerd High School Alumni Art Exhibition, which opens Oct. 2.
"The oldest exhibitor graduated in 1948 and the newest one graduated in 2006, so we've got every single decade, which I think is incredible. I dreamed of that, but I didn't think it would happen," said Matthies, who taught art at BHS from 1959-61 and instructed many BHS graduates while teaching at Central Lakes College from 1966-96.
Most artists will exhibit two pieces, and a wide variety of media will be represented.
"I was hoping for 25 artists, so there'd be 50 items, but we got 40 people," Matthies said. "A couple people are bringing just one item. Brian Hauck (class of 1972) is bringing in a motorcycle he built. That'll take the space of four.
"We said we would accept anything in the arts. One gal (Kelly Street, 2006) did a decorative mask and tiara for the theater.
"Fly Reels," an acrylic painting by 1978 graduate Cindy Wicklund, will be among the work on display in the Brainerd High School Alumni Art Exhibition, which opens Oct. 2.
"Tom Aarrestad (1978) is an illustrator of kids' books. He did a couple books with the two older Osmond brothers, and then he went out on his own."
Area art fans will recognize many of the exhibitors, Matthies said.
"Ray Frisch (1948) is a retired English teacher. I framed a poem he wrote that was in an anthology. It was set to music.
"Another interesting thing is we've got three (cases of) two generations showing. Steve Seevers (1971) has two of his kids (Benjamin, 1995, and Reid, 1999), Ray Frisch has his son (Bradley, 1979) and John Erickson (1967) has his daughter (Kate, 2003)."
Matthies said the exhibit demonstrates the value of getting into art at a young age.
"Sectionline," an acrylic painting by 1979 graduate Maria Thompson, will be among the work on display in the Brainerd High School Alumni Art Exhibition, which opens Oct. 2.
"Because you've gotta have a taste of it, and then you may pursue it later on," the retired teacher said. "These people are all into (art) hot and heavy. Many of them are professionals."
Brainerd High School Alumni Art Exhibit artists
Ray Frisch, 1948, poetry, lyrics.
Phyllis Frankum, 1958, watercolor.
Joey Halverson, 1961, photography.
Kathy LaSar, 1961, collage.
Mary H. Roberts, 1961, pen, ink, pastel.
John C. Conway, 1962, acrylic.
Rick Anderson, 1965, film.
Lorraine Embretson, 1966, photography.
"No Coffee @ the Q," an acrylic painting by 1971 graduate Steve Seevers, will be among the work on display in the Brainerd High School Alumni Art Exhibition.
Diane Runberg, 1966, watercolor.
John Erickson, 1967, photography.
Raymond Lindberg, 1970, pencil.
Steve Seevers, 1971, sculpture, acrylic.
Mark Sell, 1971, woodcarving, acrylic.
Mic Stowell, 1971, ceramics.
Bruce Hauck, 1972, custom built motorcycle.
Mark Stegner, 1972, pencil.
What: Brainerd High School Alumni Art Exhibition.
When: Tuesday through Oct. 20; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays and Oct. 13.
Reception: 4:30 p.m. Oct. 7 following Peggy Kriha Dye recital.
Where: Gallery 119, Franklin Arts Center, Brainerd.
Carla M. Benjamin, 1973, mixed media.
Millie Engisch-Morris, 1974, sculpture.
Ron Morris, 1974, photography.
Thomas Aarrestad, 1978, color pencil, watercolor.
Cindy Wicklund, 1978, acrylic.
Bradley Frisch, 1979, stoneware.
Maria Thompson Seep, 1979, acrylic.
Phil Aarrestad, 1983, photography.
Bobbi Bye Enzor, 1983, acrylic.
Anna Krekow, 1983, poetry, photography.
Jane Matthies-Holtan, 1983, ink, nature print.
Todd Matthies, 1984, film.
Kay Lynnae Bye, 1987, Photoshop, design.
Heather Smith Duininck, 1988, acrylic.
Jennifer Austin Anderson, 1993, acrylic.
Jenny Peterson, 1994, mixed media.
Benjamin Seevers, 1995, acrylic, collage.
Anthony Bloom, 1997, pencil.
Nick DeVries, 1997, stoneware.
Reid Seevers, 1999, acrylic.
Michael Weiss, 2002, stoneware.
Kate Erickson, 2003, photography.
Erik Macy, 2004, pottery, ceramics.
Kelly Street, 2006, mixed media.
JOHN HANSEN may be reached at email@example.com or 855-5863.
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