By Katya Agatucci | The Broadside (Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org)
“To me, these pieces are alive. If you cracked [the gourds] open
in the spring, they would grow.”
-Lynn Rothan, featured artist
Lynn Rothan and her inspiration from nature’s natural imagery spans over 20 years of constant creation from pods and seeds.This idea of a connection between pods and regeneration created an entire showcase in Central Oregon Community College’s Pence Pinckney Gallery for the month of January.
The theme of the one person exhibitions is surrounded by the idea of “Wipe your glasses with what you know.” Bill Hoppe, art director at COCC, met Rothan years ago when he first came to Bend.
“I was so impressed with her work. It immediately took me back to the French emblematic surrealist movement. The beautiful floating shapes, the Prendergast pointillist paintings, and the richness of the surfaces were like nothing I’ve ever seen in Central Oregon,” Hoppe said.
January’s exhibit showcased a theme of recurring work done by Rothan that surrounded the idea of pods, seeds, and “nature’s perfect design.” According to Rothan, nature’s patterns and colors compel her.
“When Bill invited me, he asked me what the theme was and over the years, the pod and seed shape has recurred and keeps coming out; I keep painting it over and over again. So I thought, ‘I’ll be able to pull something together with that,’” Rothan explained.
When she went into her studio space after Hoppe invited her to showcase her work, she was excited to find that she has created many pieces about pods and seeds. “[There were] more than I was consciously aware of, so this show has been really fun to pull together. It’s been 20 years of work,” Rothan said.
Surrounding the paintings that were displayed in the gallery were totem poles made from gourds. Rothan said that they were “the heart piece” of the show. The totem poles displayed around the gallery came together in just three weeks before the show.
Rothan explained that “The concept of the seed and gourd holding something that is alive. To me, these pieces are alive. If you cracked [the gourds] open in the spring, they would grow. So it’s been really interesting to reflect on all of these shapes in the paintings, it’s all the same.”
“[The seed] a portal and a vehicle for communicating so many different things, Rothan said. Out front of the Pinckney Gallery, Rothan left gifts for attendees, small bags with seeds that came out of the pods as she was creating them.
The variations of mediums and shapes used to create and pull together the showcase encompassed the idea that a seed holds birth, death, regeneration and truth. The themes that appear in the body of Rothan’s work were a personal creation that she was able to share with COCC.
For more information on Rothan and her work, visit https://www.lynnrothan.com/ ■