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A little bit of everything included in exhibit

December 28, 2018

Northeast Nebraska artists Leroy von Glan and Pearl Hansen bring an eclectic mix of stoneware, raku, watercolors and mixed medium to the Norfolk Arts Center in their aptly named exhibition, “A Little Bit of Everything.”

von Glan’s functional yet striking stoneware pieces include his iconic donut teapots and “Tea Rex” — a teapot shaped liked a dinosaur. The seeming simplicity of the beautifully-glazed bowls and vessels with graceful curves and intricate handles belies the complexity of their creation. von Glan describes himself as a “big kid playing in the mud.” That humorous description may distill his artistry, but it doesn’t give proper credit to his skill.

von Glan’s traditional pottery work is well-known around the area, but you may be surprised by his extensive thematic and abstract pieces. Some are subtle while others offer more blatant interpretations, such as “Bank Fishing for Bluegill”, a stoneware and mixed medium piece that has to be viewed in a full 360 degrees to see the entire story.

Many abstract wall pieces are included in the exhibit. Raku, a type of pottery firing that originated in Japan, dominates the construction of the abstract pieces with some interplay with wood and metal.

The sometimes tongue-in-cheek titles of the pieces illuminate von Glan’s humor yet provide a deeper understanding of the intent of the work.

Pearl Hansen’s body of work includes landscapes and abstracts. She is particularly inspired by the landscapes of Nebraska, and her work is informed by her exploration of the backroads of the rural northeast.

Hansen’s watercolor pieces are a reflection of nature and demonstrate an admiration of rural environments. The changing natural light and its effect are part of her subject matter. Hansen prefers to work small in order to draw the viewer in closer which creates a feeling of intimacy with her scenics.

The collection includes her “Dome of Reason” series, paintings done on steel domes. The curved nature of the domes renders an effect similar to looking through a glass window or a lens.

Her “Accidental Pearls” collection consists of the unexpected — spray paint and caulk on cardboard. In contrast to her watercolors and domes, these abstracts are large and have a playful quality. Hansen does not deliberately compose these pieces but instead allows her imagination and intuition to create the accidental.

“A Little Bit of Everything” runs through Feb. 28, 2019, and is free and open to the public. In addition, von Glan will be demonstrating his creation process at the NAC’s Soup ’R Art event on Jan. 27.

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