2020 Virtual Exhibit

Two older women look at a painting by Aurora Mendez.

Since the Council’s first Gallery Night event in 2011, we take the opportunity to exhibit art created by artists who are blind or visually impaired. This year, fourteen artists ranging in age and medium used are participating.

See our participating artists’ artwork and their artist statements below.

Due to COVID-19,the virtual exhibit will be up through November 15, 2020. Most artwork is available for purchase, with 20% of the proceeds going to the Council and 80% going to the artist.

Thank you for supporting our artists and the work of the Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired.

Virtual Exhibit

Full Sun

Artist: Julie Chumas, Eau Claire

Description of artwork: A group of three paintings with a mix of yellows, greens, oranges and purples in a modern style.

Mixed media; each panel is 20 inches by 16.25 inches

Audio description
Description of Julie Chumas’s “Full Sun”
Price: $900

Patient Endurance

Artist: Julie Chumas, Eau Claire

Description of artwork: One large piece that fades from maroon streaks of paint on the top, to grey, white and grey again.

Acrylic on canvas; 24 inches by 36.75 inches

Audio description
Description of Julie Chumas’s “Patient Endurance”

Price: $500

Celestial Phoenix

Artist: Deb Clair, Madison

Description of artwork: A majestic swirl of golds in the broad shape of a phoenix bird, with purple and white in the background.

Acrylic; 21.5 inches by 17.5 inches

Audio description
Description of Deb Clair’s “Celestial Phoenix”
Price: Not for sale

Revelation Sky

Artist: Deb Clair, Madison

Description of artwork: A sunrise over mountains; the mountains are dark green, sun golden and sky a three-stripe of light green, teal and dark green.

Acrylic; 32 inches by 23 inches

Audio description
Description of Deb Clair’s “Revelation Sky”
Price: Not for sale

Morning Dew in Spring

Artist: Ellen Connor, Oregon

Description of artwork: Close-up of a bright orange-red tulip with purple bell flowers, both covered in giant dew drops.

Photography; 8 by 10 inches, mounted on 11 by 14 inches

Audio description
Description of Ellen Connor’s “Morning Dew in Spring”
Price: $75

Inner Workings

Artist: Ellen Connor, Oregon

Description of artwork: Close-up of the inside of a tulip.

Photography; 8 by 10 inches, mounted on 11 by 14 inches

Audio description
Description of Ellen Connor’s “Inner Workings”
Price: $75

You've Got Mail

Artist: Ellen Connor, Oregon

Description of artwork: Two bright purple flowers.

Photography; 8 by 10 inches, mounted on 11 by 14 inches

Audio description
Price: $75

Coleus

Artist: Ellen Connor, Oregon

Description of artwork: Several plants with lime green leaf edges and marroon leaf interiors.

Photography; 8 by 10 inches, mounted on 11 by 14 inches

Audio description
Price: $75

Morning Crow

Artist: Caden Drier, Fall Creek

Description of artwork: A rooster made of crushed glass stands on a bright green glass grass; four white boards make up the background of this piece.

Smashed glass

Audio description
Description of Caden Drier’s “Morning Crow”
Price: Not for sale

Dripping Ferns

Artist: Rosemarie Fortney, Milwaukee

Description of artwork: Abstract black and white lines dripping down the page.

Digital media on Dibond; 23 inches wide by 30 inches tall

Audio description
Description of Rosemary Fortney’s “Dripping Ferns”
Price: $375

Our World on the Brink

Artist: Rosemarie Fortney, Milwaukee

Description of artwork: Two trees with golden leaves in an abstract nature scene with pink and red flowers and swirls of green and white color.

Alcohol ink on Dibond; 30 inches wide by 23 inches tall

Audio description
Description of Rosemary Fortney’s “Our World on the Brink”
Price: $450

Vortex

Artist: Rosemarie Fortney, Milwaukee

Description of artwork: A bright yellow and orange abstract design.

Alcohol ink on Dibond; 18 inches wide by 30 inches tall

Audio description
Price: $400

Palm Trees

Artist: Alison Fortney, Milwaukee

Description of artwork: Looking up at a group of palm trees with blue sky in the background.

Photograph printed on metal; 14 inches wide by 11 inches high

Audio description
Description of Alison Fortney’s “Palm Trees”
Price: $90

Organge and Black Butterfly

Artist: Alison Fortney, Milwaukee

Description of artwork: A butterfly sits on a white flower with a blurred green background.

Photograph printed on matte metal; 20 inches wide by 16 inches high

Audio description
Description of Alison Fortney’s “Orange and Black Butterfly”
Price: $250

Trees & Pergola

Artist: Alison Fortney, Milwaukee

Description of artwork: A tree drips with Spanish moss over a wooden pergola and trail to a bench.

Photograph printed on metal; 16 inches wide by 20 inches high

Audio description
Description of Alison Fortney’s “Trees & Pergola”
Price: $250

Symmetrical Succulent

Artist: Alison Fortney, Milwaukee

Description of artwork: Close-up of a multi-leaved green succulent.

Photograph printed on matte metal; 14 inches wide by 11 inches high

Audio description
Description of Alison Fortney’s “Symmetrical Succulent”
Price: $90

Water

Artist: Duncan Hamilton, Verona

Description of artwork: A blue and green checkered pattern in the center with a red to light yellow ombre around it.

Oil pastel on paper; 8.3 inches by 11.7 inches

Audio description
Description of Duncan Hamilton’s “Water”
Price: Not for sale

Electricity

Artist: Duncan Hamilton, Verona

Description of artwork: Dark blue and green color strips halved by a white swoosh.

Oil pastel on paper; 8.3 inches by 11.7 inches

Audio description
Description of Duncan Hamilton’s “Electricity”
Price: Not for sale

Evening

Artist: Duncan Hamilton, Verona

Description of artwork: A blurry checkered pattern with blues, whites and purples.

Oil pastel on paper; 9 inches by 12 inches

Audio description
Description of Duncan Hamilton’s “Evening”
Price: $200

Mix

Artist: Duncan Hamilton, Verona

Description of artwork: A blurry checkered pattern with oranges, peach, yellow, greens and blues.

Oil pastel on paper; 12 inches by 9 inches

Audio description
Price: $200

Cut Flowers

Artist: Donna Miller, Madison

Description of artwork: Several vases hold bright-colored floral arrangements on a step.

Oil; 14 inches by 18 inches

Audio description
Price: Not for sale

Chelsea Roses

Artist: Donna Miller, Madison

Description of artwork: Five light-pink roses with their green leaves.

Oil; 14 inches by 18 inches

Audio description
Description of Donna Miller’s “Chelsea Roses”
Price: $360

Lake Michigan Shore Butterfly

Artist: Donna Miller, Madison

Description of artwork: Light blue and yellow butterfly perched between two large rocks.

Oil; 11 inches by 14 inches

Audio description
Description of Donna Miller’s “Lake Michigan Shore Butterfly”
Price: $280

The Ridges

Artist: Donna Miller, Madison

Description of artwork: Leaves fall into a pond with a cedar tree and woods in background.

Oil; 11 inches by 14 inches

Audio description
Description of Donna Miller’s “The Ridges”
Price: $280

Shifted Portrait

Artist: Isabel Kinerk, Lake Geneva

Description of artwork: A cartoon of a girl with three-eyed glasses, brown hair and a black shirt.

Digital illustration; 11-inch x 14-inch print of digital image

Audio description
Description of Isabel Kinerk’s “Shifted Portrait”
Price: $70

Sorceress Concept Painting

Artist: Isabel Kinerk, Lake Geneva

Description of artwork: An animated woman with a black dress with flowing ruby-lined sleeves, blue skin and black hair.

Digital illustration; 11-inch x 14-inch print of digital imag-

Audio description
Description of Isabel Kinerk’s “Sorceress Concept Painting”
Price: $95

Scientist Concept Painting

Artist: Isabel Kinerk, Lake Geneva

Description of artwork: A smiling woman in a white lab coat, black belt and buttons holding a wrench in one hand and goggles onto her head with the other hand.

Digital illustration; 11-inch x 1-inch print of digital image

Audio description
Description of Isabel Kinerk’s “Scientist Concept Painting”
Price: $80

Blind Superhero Turnaround

Artist: Isabel Kinerk, Lake Geneva

Description of artwork: One person holding a white cane over their shoulder is shown three times from the front, half-side and side. The person is wearing white, black and red and the full background is grey.

Digital illustration; 11-inch x 14-inch print of digital image

Audio description
Description of Isabel Kinerk’s “Blind Superhero Turnaround”

Price: $95

Sometimes You Got to Kiss a Few Before You Find Your Prince

Artist: Jeannie Nylander, La Crosse

Description of artwork: A group of two sitting frogs in green with their mouths open.

Ceramic

Audio description
Description of Jeannie Nylander’s “Sometimes You Got to Kiss a Few Before You Find Your Prince”
Price: $75

Turtle

Artist: Jeannie Nylander, La Crosse
Description of artwork: A turtle wearing a pink hat with a light green shell with dark green accents. Ceramic
Audio description
Description of Jeannie Nylander’s “Turtle”
Price: Not for sale

Goofy Pose

Artist: Eli Santin, Madison

Description of artwork: Hand-drawn cartoon cat with giant bloodshot eyes.

Sketch

Audio description
Description of Eli Santin’s “Goofy Pose”

Price: Not for sale

Neutral Pose

Artist: Eli Santin, Madison

Description of artwork: Hand-drawn cat with whiskers stands with his belly paunched out.

Sketch

Audio description
Description of Eli Santin’s “Neutral Pose”

Price: Not for sale

Stock Angry Expression

Artist: Eli Santin, Madison

Description of artwork: Hand-drawn cat stands with hands on hips and bloodshot eyes.

Sketch

Audio description
Description of Eli Santin’s “Stock Angry Expression”

Price: Not for sale

Fan Picture Pose

Artist: Eli Santin, Madison
Description of artwork: A hand-drawn cat with bloodshot eyes holds its hand out while squeezing a young boy with a Comicon shirt with the other arm Sketch
Audio description
Description of Eli Santin’s “Fan Picture Pose”

Price: Not for sale

Animated Short Video

Artist: Eli Santin, Madison

Price: Not for sale

Four Jack Pines

Artist: Jill Smith, Appleton

Description of artwork: Four trees sketched in black charcoal on white paper.

Charcoal on paper print; 11 inches by 17 inches 

Audio description

Price: $50

Grand Marais

Artist: Jill Smith, Appleton

Description of artwork: One large pine and a smaller pine sketched in black charcoal on white paper.

Charcoal on paper print; 11 inches by 14 inches

Audio description

Price: $50

North Lake White Pine

Artist: Jill Smith, Appleton

Description of artwork: A group of trees, including one tall white pine, sketched in charcoal on white paper.

Charcoal on paper print; 11 inches by 14 inches

Audio description

Price: $50

Pastel Colors

Artist: Nikki Wolf, Janesville

Description of artwork: Close-up of a coral flower with green stem and leaf.

Photography; 8-inch by 10-inch photo in an 11-inch by 14-inch frame

Audio description
Description of Nikki Wolf’s “Pastel Colors”

Price: $60

Butterfly on Purple Flower

Artist: Nikki Wolf, Janesville

Description of artwork: A moth climbs the side of a purple flower stalk.

Photography; 8-inch by 10-inch photo in an 11-inch by 14-inch frame

Audio description
Description of Nikki Wolf’s “Butterfly on Purple Flower”

Price: $60

TREES ARE ON FIRE

Artist: Ken Lonnquist, Madison

Description of artwork: Song written and performed by Ken.

weave

Artist: Ken Lonnquist, Madison

Description of artwork: Song written and performed by Ken.

Artist Statements

Julie Chumas, Eau Claire

“I have been an artist since I was a little girl. I am inspired by my challenges and use art as a way to work through difficult emotions. In the past, I painted what I saw. Since I have lost my vision and learned a new way to paint, what shows up on the canvas is in my heart and what I feel.”

Listen to Julie’s artist statement

Listen to Julie Chumas’s artist statement

Deb Clair, Madison

“My loss of vision has merely changed the form of my art, making it more authentic. When I had better eyesight, I often confined myself to copying others. Now I draw from inner vision and inspiration from my ideas, which is freeing and much more satisfying.”

Listen to Deb’s artist statement:

Listen to Deb Clair’s artist statement

Ellen Connor, Oregon

“Creating art allows me to touch others with my work. My favorite things to photograph are flowers and butterflies. When I put a photo on my computer, I see details that I cannot see when I look at the flower itself. My visual impairment led me to experiment with new aspects of photography for a clearer image.”

Listen to Ellen’s artist statement:

Listen to Ellen Connor’s artist statement

Caden Drier, Fall Creek

“This was my first time creating glass art. I chose it because I wanted to create something different and interesting. Because of my visual impairment, I decided to do this form of art since it is tactile. I wanted to be able to enjoy it by touch. As an eighth grader, creating art is calming and a way to express myself.”

Listen to Caden’s artist statement:

Listen to Caden Drier’s artist statement

Rosemarie Fortney, Milwaukee

“I used art as a big stress relief when my daughter, Alison, was diagnosed with a brain tumor at the age of five. My visual impairment gives me the freedom to flow because I feel there are no strict boundaries I have to adhere to when creating art. I strive to make my art resonate with the viewer, so sharing happens between myself and those viewing my work.”

Listen to Rosemarie’s artist statement:

Listen to Rosemarie Fortney’s artist statement

Alison Fortney, Milwaukee

“My first experience with photography was in my senior year in high school. While I have a visual impairment, it has not stopped me from doing what I love. I enjoy exploring nature and capturing its wonder. By using my camera, I am able to create beautiful, visually captivating works of art.”

Listen to Alison’s artist statement:

Listen to Alison Fortney’s artist statement

Duncan Hamilton, Verona

“I have been an amateur artist all my life. I enjoy working with oil pastels because it gives me the ability to work on smaller projects I can see with my magnifier. I want anyone with vision loss who sees my art to know they can adapt and create; they do not need to give up.”

Listen to Duncan’s artist statement:

Listen to Duncan Hamilton’s artist statement

Isabel Kinerk, Lake Geneva

“I am studying animation in college. My visual impairment prevents me from seeing the finer details of an image, but it allows me to focus on the essential basic elements used in creating animated characters. Visual arts are an easy way for me to express myself and connect with others.”

Listen to Isabel’s artist statement:

Listen to Isabel Kinerk’s artist statement

Donna Miller, Madison

“Painting has been a hobby of mine for all my life – I’m 90 now. I use a video magnifier and a monocular to continue to paint as my vision changes. I have created about 70 paintings throughout my lifetime and I try to do at least five new pieces each year. I want to encourage the amateur artist. If you have a talent, you should pursue it.”

Listen to Donna’s artist statement:

Listen to Donna Miller’s artist statement

Jeannie Nylander, La Crosse

“I chose to create art using clay because it is very tactile. The longer I have been without sight the more my sense of touch has come alive. Creating art has always been a healing process for me. I would tell others who want to create art that, even though life may hit you hard, do not give up on your dreams.”

Listen to Jeannie’s artist statement:

Listen to Jeannie Nylander’s artist statement

Eli Santin, Madison

“The Simpsons got me into animation because it is so fluid, smooth and energetic. My visual impairment helps me realize the way I see the world is unique and it translates into my art. Creating art is important to me because I have an active mind. The only way I can get ideas and visions out of my mind is to draw.”

Listen to Eli’s artist statement:

Listen to Eli Santin’s artist statement

Jill Smith, Appleton

“The inspiration for my drawings came while kayaking on the river in Menominee, Wisconsin. I created my drawings while out on the water. Each drawing depicts a moment in time when the lighting, weather and current were ideal for drawing. Creating art helps me be outside of myself and in a flow state.”

Listen to Jill’s artist statement:

Listen to Jill Smith’s artist statement

Nikki Wolf, Janesville

“I like to think I see things differently, seeing the beauty all around me. I have been visually impaired my whole life because of being born premature (ROP). I only have vision in my left eye. I have enjoyed photography since high school, and recently started taking pictures again. In the click of a shutter, you can freeze a moment of time forever.”

Listen to Nikki’s artist statement:

Listen to Nikki Wolf’s artist statement

Ken Lonnquist, Madison

“I started writing songs as a kid. Fast forward to today – I am a singer/songwriter whose music spans multiple genres. My visual impairment is changing my approach to my art since I can no longer see the expressions audience members while I’m performing. The music I make is all about communication and connection with other people.”

Listen to Ken’s artist statement:

Listen to Ken Lonnquist’s artist statement

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