We will be holding a reception for Tammy Harrell, Sheree Collins, & The Whittler’s Wife. Tammy Harrell & Sheree Collins are our Midtown gallery guest artists for August 2023 and The Whittler’s Wife is our Midtown gallery jewelry artist this month. We hope you will join us for refreshments as we celebrate these incredible artists.
Thursday, August 17th
5 pm to 8 pm
1125 N. Main, Hutchinson
Tammy Harrell Bio
I retired 4 years ago from the Hutchinson clinic in the MRI department. I wanted to pursue painting. I enrolled in a class at the senior center and this journey began. The ladies at the Senior center have been painting for 40 years and took me under their wing. They have taught me so much and taught me to paint what I love. With each painting I began to improve. I branched out into doing faces. Then I started painting the Chiefs and some more modern art with lots of color. After entering some of my paintings at the Kansas State Fair, I won some ribbons, so that encouraged me to do more. I have always loved the Chiefs, so I began painting them. Those seem to be my most popular pieces. I began selling my portraits of the Chiefs and that is what I am doing to this day.
Sheree Collins Bio
Sheree Collins lives in Arlington Kansas with her husband Charles, three dogs, a cat, five horses and a fish.
Art has always been an important part of her life. As a small child she drew horses and made small story books that where stapled together and shared with family.
Sheree developed an interest in jewelry and ceramics during high School under the tutelage of some remarkable Art Teachers in McPherson. She started her college career as an Art Major. Later moved to and graduated with a degree in Theater Education.
Career, marriage, animals and family became front runners for time and energy. But Art was never completely out of the picture.
In her last job before retiring she acted as a Case Manager for individuals with persistent mental illness. This gave her an opportunity to explore Art Therapy treatments. And thus a style was born.
Sheree’s inspiration comes from her own emotional responses as she interacts with her animals, her travels, weather and emotional storms. Her question is always what do you feel when you see a storm in the mountains, or realize how small and how significant we are are to this creation called Earth.
“I am looking to make the viewer feel something. I want people to be attracted to a painting because it makes them struggle with a memory. Whether you cry, smile, feel disgust, or joy is all a win for me. I believe that our job as artists is not to reproduce what God has created, but to elicit and emotional response to that creation.”
The Whittler’s Wife
Hello, we are Samuel and Rowena Culp of the Whittler’s Wife. Whittling is a more of American term coming from places like the Appalachian Mountain region to the western plains. Our whittling goes back into Scotland, Ireland, Scandinavia and Germany. The Vikings moved across these countries leaving many traditions. The Scandinavian term for whittling was flat plane carving. Which is used to enhance furnishings, creating art and sculpture. Italy and Greece had their own styles of ornate carving, in short there are many terms for the art of whittling or carving. Throughout Europe apprenticeships in this craft was common. The difference in classical carving and whittling is the level of apprenticeships for the technical knowledge. Most people who become adept in whittling have not completed structured apprenticeships, but through practice, self study and shared experiences achieve skills.
Some people just innately know they can make things in wood, 5 year old Samuel was one of these people. He absconded with a pocket knife from his grandmother’s purse. Although she did not miss it, she would have eventually, but she had not needed it yet. Before she could miss it Samuel felt bad and returned it to her. When asked why he wanted it, he told her his desire to whittle and make things. Grandma decided to let him have the knife. Like any grandmother she told him to be careful. This was the start of his self apprenticeship in whittling.
Samuel creates the traditional Scandinavian style of spoons using an axe and a knife.In the beginning it took one month to create the first spoon. Now he can rough out the spoon in an hour and after completely drying do the finish work, averaging 1 ½ hours to complete a spoon. His self training process included various types of carving, such as relief carving, chip carving and sculpture. This transposes to into plaques, walking sticks, and pieces as detailed as portraits.
Samuel and Rowena’s business, The Whittler’s Wife was established in 2015 with Rowena selling his spoons. Samuel trained Rowena in the art of making wooden jewelry, turning that side of the creative process over to her. Samuel’s philosophy for life and whittling is that anything can be accomplished with time and patience. No matter what it is you are trying to accomplish, if you keep at it a little at a time, eventually you will get it done. Although there are challenges when couples create together, there is also a synergy that is created. This synergy enables Samuel and Rowena to attain levels of artistry that otherwise they would not reach individually.