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Woven themes and abstract scenes

BY NIKI VALA
October 14, 2010

The passion for creating and exploring unique concepts is evident on the canvas’ mounted on the walls of CSU’s main art gallery.

Ken Nevadomi, the artist and art teacher at CSU, has started the fall semester with his “On the Corner Off” exhibition. He has provided his audience with a closer look at his two-piece series; “Bar Culture” and a “woven” series of paintings.

“Bar Culture, I like that,” Nevadomi looks up with a grin.

He developed inspiration for “Bar Culture” after spending a sufficient amount of time down in the “strange scene” of Tremont. In this series, his pallet allows the paintings to be portrayed as abstract.

“I used heavy paint,” says Nevadomi. “The colors are not realistically put on people and the people are not real.”

The unique techniques of playing with the display, colors and positioning of elements in the “woven” paintings enhances the abstraction by using a completely different approach. The paint is used sparingly and the objects are drawn on, with paint splashed on to different areas.

“I was going to cut them up and then put them together but when I looked at them on the wall, they had their own impact as an artwork in their own right, so I left them alone,” says Nevadomi.

One thing that is apparent through Nevadomi’s work is his ability to capture an essence of liberation in art. “I appreciate Nevadomi’s work mostly for its freedom and energy,” says Dr. Robert Thurmer, Art Gallery director.

He describes himself as an artist who enjoys the freedom of art, however, points out “free” is not always the case. Nonetheless, he explores creativity from an angle of allowing his ideas to naturally develop.

Nevadomi describes the process as “the search for ideas, hunting, exploring, looking, seeing, thinking, imagining come into play.” He implements his process to his students by telling them “when something comes to mind, jump right on it.”

“I will write it down or draw it out,” says Nevadomi. “I may not execute it, but I will let the idea develop.”

His passion for art feeds his soul in the sense that, “I like what it does,” saysNevadomi. “It’s like a kid who starts taking a clock apart and then starts putting it back together. It has a magical strangeness to it.”

“His work is very fresh although it has been developed for decades,” says Thurmer. “He makes his paintings look new and young and he makes the act of painting look fun and easy -- he is a virtuoso.”

His experiences helped contribute to the ideas he worked with. As a veteran of the military, working at American Greetings in Cleveland and his job working as an art teacher for Cleveland State, Nevadomi appreciates his current position as a teacher while being able to pursue his passion in creating art.

“As a teacher he inspires his students to excellence -- he can be tough but his students learn much,” adds Thurmer.

He continues the process of executing new concepts and is always exploring new subject matters. He hopes to present his next exhibition this spring, giving the audience a taste of something different than his work shown in “On the Corner Off.”Not knowing what will come out of the mind of an artist next is always something to look forward to.

“Nevadomi is a mature artist who is completely in control of his medium he can do anything,” Thurmer concludes.

His sense of humor, free spirit and open mind to exploring new ideas makes his artwork unique and distinct. The closest critique to mastering the ideas behind his concepts in this series would have to be like a bowl of mixed emotions that is difficult to put in words. Simply put, his work is a creation of his own and it speaks for itself.