Springing forward | SteamboatToday.com

Springing forward

Artists' new work reflects current passions

Painter and bookbinder Laura Wait hangs some of her work for tonight's all-gallery show opening reception at 5 p.m. at the Artists' Gallery of Steamboat.
Allison Plean

Wildlife photographer Judy Jones isn’t scared of most of her subjects – save one.

“The only animal I am afraid of is mountain lions,” she said. “I always try to put water between us.”

Jones travels all over the country to photograph wildlife in their natural habitats and sometimes at wildlife refuges. She is one of three featured artists at the Artists’ Gallery of Steamboat’s opening tonight. Also featured are Leo Atkinson and Zanobia.

Jones is using the “Spring Fever” theme as an opportunity to show her baby animal photographs.

“It’s my chance to show the babies I love so much who come out in the spring and early summer,” she said. “My goal is to become a better naturalist, and I want people to love the wildlife we have in nature and to appreciate how beautiful they are.”

A percent of the proceeds from this show will go to the local Born Free Wildlife Rehabilitation program.

“Tracy Bye rehabilitates over 100 animals each year who are injured in a car accidents, or from an electrical wire, or whose mothers are killed,” Jones said. “She feeds all the animals and pays for their medications out of her own pocket. It is just a labor of love.”

Zanobia’s affection for aspen trees is apparent in her oil paintings in “Spring Fever.”

“They are ever-changing every day, and I always get a different painting from them,” she said. “Anyone who’s into aspen paintings – there will always be something for them. I know a lot of people who live here are also enamored by them.”

Zanobia will show new paintings of winter scenes, including a series of paintings of Hahn’s Peak Lake, some inspired by the blizzards before Christmas, and a series of work from Grand Teton National Park.

The components of Atkinson’s sculptures come from all over the globe and generally require wearing a gas mask to work with.

He will be showing sculptures made of malachite from Africa, amethyst from Brazil and Uruguay, fluorite and pyrite from China and petrified wood and geodes from Morocco.

“I’m primarily working with minerals now,” Atkinson said. “I get some pieces that have never been seen except for Moroccans in the High Atlas Mountains.”

Atkinson’s sculptures are between 2 and 4 feet tall, and each has moveable parts.

“It allows them to catch the light in houses, so people don’t have to redo their lights,” Atkinson said. “And it give mores life to it.”

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