August 30, 2013
By Barbara Baker
As a new school year opens at Northeastern Junior College, so does a new year of art exhibits on display in the Peter L. Youngers Fine Art Gallery in E.S. French Hall. A solid line up of good artistic talent will make its way to Sterling from Denver and other destination. To open this year’s gallery schedule, a beautiful display of photography by Andrew Kelley of Denver is now on display.
An outdoor photographer specializing in images of Colorado and the Rocky Mountain West. Kelley’s share with the viewer how he sees the world; what he finds striking, powerful, evocative, or interesting. In his words, he describes sharing the sense of wonder from a late-afternoon thunderstorm on the shortgrass prairie, a flock of snow geese flying out of the dawn color at Bosque del Apache, or the morning light silhouetting a flock of sandhill cranes at Monte Vista. In short, he says, his work is meant to speak to his audience and say, “This is what moves me about the world, and here’s why.” His photography has been featured in magazines around the world. Kelley, who is the brother of Nate Kelley who is the sports medicine program director at Northeastern and the athletic trainer on duty for NJC athletics, is a Colorado native and a longtime resident of Denver.
“I grew up photographing in Rocky Mountain National Park and the Rockies with my dad,” he says. “I’ve spent countless days hiking and camping in the mountains and the marvelous, unpopulated prairies in northern Colorado. Though it sounds ever-so-slightly dorky, my now-wife and I even went on dates to Rocky Mountain National Park. We would buy dinner in Estes Park, and then drive into Horseshoe Park to watch the sunset and the elk. When I started ‘serious’ photography, I naturally gravitated to photographing the same animals and landscapes that I grew up enjoying.”
Andrew Kelley says that because he photographs the natural world, authenticity is critical to what he does. “However, I am not a documentary photographer,” he explains. “That means that I will work with an image to ensure that it captures the world the way I see it — my reaction to the scene — and not the way that the camera sees it. I would never alter the natural history of a photograph or make it inauthentic. I want to show something about my reaction to the world, not make digital photo art.” This artist’s work has been on display and sold at a number of galleries in Colorado this year including ones in Castle Rock, Denver, Evergreen, Boulder, Frisco, Breckenridge and Monte Vista. His show here in Sterling features about 20 pieces. He has an excellent website at http://www.andrewkelley.net/
Long time art instructor Peter Youngers (left), the namesake of the Peter L. Youngers Fine Art Gallery on the campus of Northeastern Junior College takes a minute to talk about the history of shows in the gallery with David Wagner (right), the new full-time art program director, gallery curator and professor who recently came to Northeastern from New York. The two were admiring some of the work of photographer Andrew Kelley now on display through September 19th.
Shows in the Peter L. Youngers Fine Art Gallery will be coordinated this year by Northeastern’s new art professor David Wagner, assisted by social sciences professor Jeff Schiel.
See the show
Kelley’s show is on display at the Sterling gallery through September 19th. A closing reception for the artist will be held on Thursday, September 19th from 4-5 p.m. in the Peter Youngers Fine Art Gallery. This reception is free and open to the public. The gallery is also open to the public from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. In the event that you would be in the building and not find the gallery open, you may request that it be opened during normal business hours by contacting the Liberal Arts office located in the same building on the same floor.