BLACKFOOT – L. Dewayne Young commissioned an original oil painting by local artist Ken Spencer that will be presented to the Blackfoot Performing Arts Center at an open house on June 25 from 2-5 p.m. The public is invited to come and view the painting and meet the artist and donor. The painting will hang in the BPAC as a memorial gift to honor the late Donald E. Silvius, M.D.
Young started collecting Spencer's art several years ago. Silvius also admired the local artist and was a lifetime patron of the arts. Silvius passed away Dec. 24, 2010, and Young chose to honor the memory of his friend with a lasting tribute which is being gifted to the BPAC.
"DeWayne wanted this to be a gift to Blackfoot," said Spencer. "He liked the idea of donating something to the Performing Arts Center and I think it is perfect. It is a beautiful facility, but has no art on the walls."
Spencer says he worked closely with Young to choose the perfect piece. They decided on a painting that may look familiar. It depicts a scene on Idaho's South Fork of the Snake River east of Heise. Spencer says he found the area while fishing and found the lighting to be perfect.
"The BPAC is honored to receive a commissioned work by Ken Spencer, a nationally acclaimed artist who happens to be from Blackfoot," said BPAC programming director Susan Mann. "Ken Spencer is a amazing artist and we are thrilled that our facility was chosen as the location to hang this beautiful scene of Idaho."
Spencer, originally from Northern Utah, began painting when he was 14 years old. He has studied at Utah State University where he learned the fundamentals of compostion and form. He graduated in 1993 with a Bachelor's Degree of Illustration.
Spencer has travelled the world painting what he finds. His arts can be found in galleries around the United States of America.
Spencer's bio is impressive. After finishing his work at the university, he moved his family to the New York metropolitan area where he worked as an illustrator for book publishers and magazines. It was during this time when Spencer began developing his fine art career by painting for exhibition in galleries and juried shows. He says he has exhibited his work throughout the United States.
"Oil painting is who I am. The process of painting in oils, for me, is more natural," said Spencer. "Oils have greater spectrum in terms of colors and values. The process of painting in oils is far more liberal to create deep layering textures. You can do anything with oils."
Spencer has been included in such shows as the Oil Painters of America (2004 Award), Scottsdale Artist's School- Best and Brightest, The Harrisburg, Pa., Art Association (winning Best of Show), and National Oil & Acrylic Painters' Society (Monteverde Award). After living on the East Coast for seven years, he moved his family back to the West where he now pursues his fine art career full time.
He and his family live in Blackfoot. Be sure to see the cover story on Ken Spencer in Bingham Magazine. The magazine will be on stands June 30.