Although I don't know if painter Gary Bowling is a Buffett fan or not, his paintings of Midwestern landscapes do just that - they take the weather them and bring it to us, the viewers.Bowling
, who currently has an exhibit of new paintings at Hyde Gallery
on Walnut Street, has been one of the Midwest's foremost painters for years.He and his wife live in Lamar, Bowling's hometown, where they moved in 1983 after Bowling began making enough money selling his works to leave his college art department position at Westmar College in Iowa.
One of the most prolific and collected painters in this area, Bowling's
paintings are in many private, corporate and museum collections - and it's easy to see why.His
straightforward, impressionist-style oils on canvas and paper have an easy likability as well as a deeper beauty that never gets trite or boring.
Most of Bowling's
landscapes have featured Midwestern scenes, working, as the gallery statement says, from "photographic notes."Like the 19th-century French Impressionists who have influenced him so deeply, he
paints fields, flowers, striking sunsets and even haystacks, albeit American-style ones.
Always, the weather is a factor.On his Web site, www.gbowlingstudio.com, Bowling writes of how he finds an emotional connection to the weather and he also speaks of how, working in a basement office when he was teaching, his paintings "evolved into an exploration of light and atmosphere and ideas associated with landscape."
Bowling parts ways with the French Impressionists when it comes to portraying people in his
Hyde also said that Bowling
traveled to France recently and some of the paintings featured, such as "Garden" and "Vineyards and Emerald Meadows" are actually scenes from France, rather than from Missouri or the surrounding area.
Hyde also pointed out that Bowling
has begun to mix many of his own pigments rather than buy mass-manufactured paints and color is certainly one of the strengths of his work.
exhibit of new paintings continues through the end of November at Hyde Gallery
, 210 E. Walnut St. Gallery hours are 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday.