Moab Happenings Archive
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May at Gallery Moab
by Thea Nordling
Artist JC Borders

Delight your eye with a visit to Gallery Moab! Our vibrant selection of locally created art is constantly changing, so stop by to see what’s new.

Our May Guest Artist, pastel painter JC Borders, creates realistic desert landscapes distinctive for their subtle colors, blending and shading, and precise detail. After moving from the Pacific Northwest to Moab in 1997, Borders designed and built his own home/studio, started a photo tour business, and taught pastel classes, sharing his decades-long experience with the medium, He has taught and mentored several artists who later formed a pastel guild and helped to found Gallery Moab.

Borders loves pastel for its dense color, directness and flexibility. Although he works from reference photographs, he says “my paintings often don’t end up looking much like those photos, since I often rearrange the trees, the rocks, even the mountains. I work hard to get the light, shade, value, and color for the sense of depth I crave in my landscapes.” He is influenced by the late Albert Bierstadt, Wilson Hurley, and Thomas Moran, and the still-living Western realist painter James Bama.

Fall - Gambel Oak by JC Borders

Borders works in his upstairs studio while listening to classical music, describing his process as “slowly bringing shapes into the light like an artistic sunrise.” He says, “I blend so many colors on my paper, not just sticking with the straight hues in my soft pastel and pastel pencil collection, offering me endless possibilities to get just the right shade and feel that I want.”

Dustin Hardgrove, our newest gallery member and Featured Artist this month, paints energetic oils that show his skill in both figurative and landscape painting. He is a self-described “working class artist whose creative process has blossomed in the free hours aside from labor as a fine carpenter.” He says he discovered art “as a new and appropriate avenue to explore ideas of nature, environmental devastation, existence and resistance.” He attended classes at the Art Students League of Denver from 2012-2019, and was mentored by notable artists Kevin Wechback and Ron Hicks.

Orange by Dustin Hardgrove

Hardgrove states “…our cultural space is primarily entrenched in the digital and the virtual … By embodying the deeply physical act of artmaking, and of observing natural processes in life and landscape, I root myself in the specifics of the present. Outdoor painting brings me into a meditation with nature that … fosters a practice of extreme attention and sensitivity. The ‘plein air’ process brings immediacy into my studio work, and a direct connection with the natural world. It allows for my larger studio painting to be contemplative about the deeper meanings of landscape and the life cycle.”

Meet Borders and Hardgrove at Gallery Moab during Art Walk on Saturday, May 14, 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. While you’re here be sure to browse our wide selection of locally made original fine art and artisan crafts. Our talented member artists work in many different mediums, and each has a unique vision and personal style of expression.

Open Sunday and Monday 12 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.; Tuesday through Saturday 12 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. Call 435-220-0891 and we will gladly open by appointment during other hours.

Gallery Moab LCA 59 South Main Street #1, Moab, Utah 84532 • 435-355-0024 - Visit us on Facebook and Instagram and be sure to mention you read about Gallery Moab in the Moab Happenings.

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