Lanesboro Arts presents “On The Fly,” a juried group exhibition of work by mixed media artists inspired by fly fishing. The exhibit opens June 13 runs through August 16, 2020. Always free and open to the public, the Lanesboro Arts Gallery is open seven days a week June through August.
This special fly fishing-inspired gallery exhibition will feature work from artists Josh DeSmit, Charlie Forbes, Ted Hansen, Jake Keeler, Paul Lambrect, Gary Liubakka and Steve Sobieniak. Lanesboro and it’s surrounding streams and rivers have become destinations for fly fishers from around the state. Inspired by Root River Rod company and this growing form of outdoor tourism, this show will feature different artist’s perspectives on our natural world through the lens of fly fishing.
As exhibition artist Ted C. Hansen says, “Fly fishing and art will always have a lot of overlap. Both require a keen understanding of what is going on around oneself. There are hidden patterns that can be revealed through careful observation or sharing of knowledge. Sometimes a slow and patient approach is needed and at other times you have to race ahead, improvise, and keep things loose. And success in never guaranteed.”
Featured Artists Include:
Josh DeSmit is an obsessed artist, trout bum, and fly tier. He is also an avid hunter, outdoorsman, and former professional and collegiate hockey player. Josh grew up and still lives in Minneapolis, MN. He learned to trout fish and read water on the pocket riddled brook trout streams of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula where his family owns a cabin. This combination of city life and wilderness adventure has become the foundation for Josh’s artistic style.
Charlie Forbes resides in Saint Paul, MN with his wife and two kids. A tattoo veteran of over 20 years, Charlie runs and owns Stone Arch Tattoo and Company at the foot of the historic Stone Arch Bridge in Minneapolis. His specialty is fish and wildlife related art and tattoo work. Lapidary and Environmental Conservation are other passions of his as well as road trip adventures with his family.
The work of Ted C. Hansen is strongly rooted in the natural world. He grew up on a small farm outside of the town of Dillon, Montana. It was here that he developed his lifelong passion for art, fly fishing and spending time in the wilderness. He now lives and works in the Arts District of northeast Minneapolis and continues to discover the wild spaces and fishing opportunities of the upper midwest. Hansen works in a wide range and media and styles and specializes in oil and acrylic painting. While continually exploring new subjects, much of his work is focused on the subjects of landscapes and fish.
Jake Keeler is a Minnesota based artist and avid fly fisherman. He grew up learning to fish on the Mississippi River, while spending the rest of my free time drawing. Jake has an MFA in painting and drawing from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His work has been shown all over the U.S. and has been used by outdoor apparel and gear companies like Simms and Patagonia. As Jake says, “I’m active in conservation and advocacy efforts involving clean water, public lands, and positive community building; I use my art to not only raise awareness about these issues, but also raise money by donating at least 30% of the revenue made from my art to various organizations fighting for clean water and environmental protection.”
Lanesboro resident Paul Lambrect has been a wood sculpture artist for over 30 years. His work consists of flowing sculptures hand carved from basswood. They are painted with acrylics and stains and finished with lacquer. Most of his sculptures are recognizable forms and objects and they all have a hidden message. He has exhibited his sculptures at many of the best fine craft shows in America.
As an outdoorsman and naturalist, Gary Liubakka has incorporated his passion and patience for fly fishing into a number of art methods including quill pen and ink drawings, plein air sketching, acrylic painting. In order to expand art forms, he has pursued modern technologies such as laser engraving at the Iron Range Makerspace. Gary teaches art at the Borealis Art Guild and lives in Hibbing. He has had artwork published in outdoor magazines even the prestigious Trout Unlimited.
Steve Sobieniak has been building and repairing custom bamboo rods for over 12 years. He hopes that decades from now, someone will pick up a fly rod he made, cast it, admire how it wafts out line in gentle curls and appreciate its lithe grace and bamboo beauty. It’s a passion he brought to the area when he opened Root River Rod Co. in 2017 in downtown Lanesboro. Sobieniak’s rods begin at $1,000 and take at least 50 hours to make. Bamboo rods have something special about them, something that intrigues him. “It has a whole different feel to it, it’s slower,” he said. “It’s a sense of pride. You make something out of a raw material.”
This exhibit is sponsored by F & M Community Bank and made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.