Liza Mackinnon - Lawrence, Kansas
Ms Mackinnon is a Lawrence, Kansas librarian. As a self-taught artist she is working in a variety of mediums. Her primary focus in the last few years is historical fashion made from paper. These fashion statement paper costurmes are approximately 2.5 -3' tall and very detailed in design elements. Liza considers the country and or time period of the woman as she is designing the dress. They are created from pages of books, maps, letters, photos and currency - domestic and foreign. Many of the characters are historic figures such as Marie Antoinette, Desdamona from Shakespear, Mary Todd Lincoln, Joan of Arc, and Marie Curie, some are personalities from fiction and a few are completely abstract.
Joe Malin - Plainville, Kansas - 1928-2010
Copper Rod Art
Joe Malin was a man of few words but loved to create with wire and sheet metal. After work in farming and the oil field, he became a self-taught artist in his last 15 years. Most of his welded creations were fashioned from a heavy 8-gauge wire.. Most relate to the old "Wild West", and his sense of humor is often quite evident. Joe and his wife Rita had 9 children who were the recipients of much of his work. If they needed a weather vane, a table to hold sheet music, or an office storage unit, he would get the creative juices flowing and design a piece with "A bit of attitute". he was very please with the farm machinery of day-gone-by, which he created from memory.
Inez Marshall - Portis, Kansas - 1907-1984
Inez Marshall was born in Burr Oak, Kansas in 1907, and started carving Kansas limestone in the late 1930s while recuperating from a broken back. She continued carving while working as an auto mechanic, truck driver, and traveling evangelist. Inez's sculptures include animals, politicians, scenes from small town life, a one-fifth size Model T Ford, and the wheel and battery of an uncompleted full-size Harley Davidson motorcycle. Inez Marshall exhibited her work in her Continental Sculpture Hall at Portis until 1968 when it was moved to a hall in Abilene, but she was not happy there and returned to Portis. She had a stroke and lapsed into a coma in 1984; her sculptures and other assets were sold at an auction.Inez Marshall said, "I get inspiration from a voice. When I first touch a piece of stone, I don't even know what I'm gonna create. I stew on it. I wait for the voice. I get inspired. Then it comes. The voice comes. There is an eagle in that rock, get it out!"
Jesse Martin - Salina, Kansas - 1868-1962
Painted Polka Dots on House
Born in Salina KS in 1868, Jesse Martin became one of the town's first mail carriers. His father, C.H. was it's first mayor. In retirement, he painted his house on Mulberry Street with polka dots against a striped background. "I take a tin can with the ends out and paint the dots. For variation, I paint square patterns on the circles." He also painted native American style designs on dead trees in his back yard and on his garage. His wife taught him to sew and he would decorate the collars and cuffs and the pockets by sewing colored material on them. He used writing ink to dye the fabric. He lived to be 96.
Jim Mathews - Garden City, Kansas - 1920-2014
Jim Mathews worked as a university librarian. In retirement, he created 1000's of pieces of decorative and functional pottery, as well as interpretive and abstract ceramic pieces. Before ceramics, he worked in pencil and ink, watercolor, oil, and acrylics, as well as printmaking. The wide diversity in his designs included a focus on Native American culture, western, Asian, Middle Eastern. His wife Jean and other family members inspired his artwork, which also focused on nature, politics, society, mythology, and humor. A large collection of his pottery was donated to the Grassroots Art Center after his death by Steve and Neva Quackenbush of Garden City, KS.