Exhibit of mixed-media drawings opens Sept. 14

“In Search of Evidence,” an exhibit of work by artist Lois Peterson, will run Sept. 14 through Oct. 19 at Ripon College. The exhibit will be in Caestecker Gallery, C.J. Rodman Center for the Arts.

An artist talk and opening reception will begin at 7 p.m. Sept. 14. Open hours are 1-5 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; and 2-6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Peterson grew up on a dairy farm in the unglaciated, driftless area of western Wisconsin and attributes this to fostering her love of geography and open space. Her mixed-media drawings are done primarily with oil-based paint sticks while also including a variety of other drawing mediums. The surfaces are layered with subtle textures and details, the source of their inspiration usually very subtle or almost absent in any realist sense in the finished work.

“What I study and focus upon comes from quiet and deep spaciousness, both from within and outside myself,” Peterson says. “Midwest prairie winter landscapes, Arctic expanses of snow and ice, the African savannahs and night skies articulate these spaces of quiet mystery for me. These are places I have experienced as I search for clues of the elusive.

“As I draw, I focus on the belief that there is something more beyond what I can see. The drawings are not meant to be the end product for me, but rather the next step of an investigation into something much larger than themselves. I want to understand what language cannot explain, a knowledge that exists beyond my limits. Drawing is the way I search for what I can only sense.”

Peterson holds a bachelor’s degree in art education from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse and a masters’s degree in ceramics with minors in drawing, art history and museum studies from Texas Tech University. She has been a K-12 art specialist, a visiting assistant professor of studio art at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington, and a professor of art for 29 years at Gustavus Adolphus College in Saint Peter, Minnesota.

She exhibits her work nationally and regionally in solo and group exhibitions and has received numerous grants to support her work. She has been an invited guest artist in South Africa and Italy, served on numerous artist panels and been an invited juror for a wide range of exhibitions.


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Detail of artwork by Lois Peterson