ART TALK: JCA hosts reception for new exhibit artists

Published 10:54 pm Thursday, March 28, 2019

Talking about art is one thing; basking in it is another.

Those who attended the artists’ reception for Warren Simons and Paige Smith Wyatt at the Johnson Center for the Arts Thursday night had an opportunity to do both.

For both Simons, a photographer, and Wyatt, a painter with bold and colors strokes, art is more about the process than the product.

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However, Wiley White, JCA exhibition coordinator, said the products of both artists are incredible.

“They are so different but equally amazing,” White said.

Simons has practiced the art of seeing with a camera for 15 years, while Smith Wyatt has known since she was a child that her destiny was to be an artist.

Simons said for his art he depends on his camera and a feeling that something profound is happening right before his eyes. But, Simons has the unique ability to see what others don’t see and to sense things that others seem to miss.

And, when that happens, he almost involuntary “snaps” and the result is magical.

“I don’t manipulate my photographs,” he said. “Only the lighting at times.  What I photograph is what I see.”

And, what Smith Wyatt paints is what she sees – the softness of the flowers and landscapes with colors that pop.

“I use art to understand the world,” she said. For me, the process of painting is soothing. Art is emotion; it’s to meditate, to contemplate, to experience nature. It brings to mind awe and joy as well as the sense of calm and renewal.”

Bill Hopper, JCA director, said the Johnson Center is honored to have Simons and Smith Wyatt, two artists with Troy connections, as exhibiting artists.

“We are honored to have them and invite those who have not had the opportunity to view these amazing exhibits to do so between now and April 13,” he said. “The JCA does not have permanent exhibits. Our exhibits rotate so we have different exhibits throughout the year. And, these exhibits, Paige’s colorful flowers and Warren’s colorful photographs, are perfect exhibits for springtime. We welcome them both to the Johnson Center for the Arts.”

The JCA is open from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and until 3 p.m. on Saturday. Admission is free.