The Mesquite Fine Arts Invitational was held during the month of September and included entries from eight galleries throughout southern Utah and Nevada.
This year’s Invitational included art from Boulder City Art Guild, Dixie Watercolor Society, Moapa Art Guild, Southern Utah Art Guild, Southern Utah Watercolor Society, Spring Mountain Art Guild, City Lights Art Gallery and The Virgin Valley Artists Association. Artists from these galleries displayed over 100 oil, acrylic, pottery, digital photography and mixed media pieces throughout the month.
A reception was held at the Mesquite Fine Arts Gallery on Sep. 26 and was well attended by artists and admirers. No awards were given for the Invitational. The Invitational is open to artists all over the region so they can gain more exposure by working cooperatively with other galleries, network or even find some inspiration from other artist’s work.
Artist’s such as Ralph Taeger (the Southern Utah Art Guild) and Carol Stenger (Southern Utah Watercolor Society) took art classes in college but life got in the way and their life’s work took a different direction.
Taeger’s life took a turn toward the military and family but now after 40 years of work and retirement he is rediscovering his love of creating art. His oil painting “Sweet Fruit” shows the artist’s skill well. The colors are vibrant and eye catching. The brush strokes so realistic that you can almost feel the fuzz on the peach or imagine the juice dripping from the Mango. The detail in the painting makes you feel as if you could reach out, touch the pineapple and expect to get a sharp prick on your finger.
Stenger, a member of the Southern Utah Watercolor Society, proudly displays her watercolor “Ichabod Crane” and told the MLN that she loved painting but, again, life got in the way. Stenger didn’t completely turn away from art to make her living; she went digital and worked as a Graphic Artist. Stenger says, “Now that I’m retired, I can return to my love of painting.”
Most of the artwork from the Invitational was taken home by the artists after the reception but there is still some art available to view and for sale at the Mesquite Fine Arts Gallery located at 15 W. Mesquite Blvd. Gallery Hours are Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The exhibit for the Month of October is “Flight of Fancy.” The gallery welcomes everyone to stop by and view the works of some of the Virgin Valley’s most talented artists.