Journey to ‘Independence’ | SteamboatToday.com

Journey to ‘Independence’

Artists' Gallery presents exhibit featuring three local artists

“Independence,” July’s featured show at The Artists’ Gallery of Steamboat, is a compilation of the most recent works from local artists Phil Wright, Sandra Graves and Mary Levingston.

Each artist will show about 20 pieces, but that’s where the similarities end.

“The show has three totally different mediums,” said Levingston, who paints with watercolors. “Each artist really differs in style, yet they really compliment each other.”

Wright, an oil painter, agrees that the differing mediums complement one another.

“All of the work has a Western feel,” Wright said, “yet the show still has a wide variety.”

Wright and Levingston both paint locally, choosing sites like the Mount Zirkel Wilderness Area and the Yampa River on which to focus their work. Graves uses rocks from the area to mount her sculptures.

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“It’s beautiful and inspiring, definitely,” Wright, who moved to Steamboat five years ago, said about Routt County.

Grave’s work in “Independence” is much different than most of her work around town. The horse sculptures were part of an abstract project Graves started in college and decided to elaborate on.

“I was ready to do something looser,” Graves said. “And, so far, I’ve received a nice reaction.”

Because of a unique process in which Graves used sheets of wax instead of clay, each horse is one of a kind.

“I feel like a painter,” Graves said. “Instead of being able to make another, I have to separate the piece.”

Ten percent of the proceeds from Friday’s show will go to the Steamboat Springs Search and Rescue Children’s Education Fund, which teaches area elementary-age children about outdoor safety.

“It’s a good cause,” Leving-ston said. “We all have ties to the program, and it’s really beneficial for the kids.”

“Independence” has an opening reception tonight at 5 p.m., and the exhibit will be on display through July 30.

“The whole idea of an artist is independence,” Wright said. “Being able to think creatively and express it through art is independence.”