Next time you’re under a blanket looking outside on a snowy day, take a tip from the All Weather Gang and get your snow boots, canvas and oils to create something truly wonderful.
The Lockhart Gallery opened an extensive exhibit of landscape paintings crafted by the All Weather Gang on Oct. 24.
The All Weather Gang is a group of eight artists brought together by a shared love of spontaneous art. The Gang meets every Saturday at a local diner to discuss their lives and personal projects over coffee before driving together to find new things to paint.
Their inspirations range from small town streets to people going about their daily routines. While these subjects may seem mundane to the average person, the members of the All Weather Gang pride themselves on their passion for the everyday scenes they paint.
“You don’t need the Grand Canyon to paint a great picture,” All Weather Gang member Michael Killelea said. “You can make a painting out of anything.”
This perspective doesn’t end with the subjects painted by the All Weather Gang. They will also paint in sunshine or snow, hence their name. Whatever the weather, the group makes the most of the outdoors. Often, this skill may lead to the creation of an even better painting.
All Weather Gang member Steve BonDurant noted how painting outside during the winter led to some very profound works.
“Painting a winter scene with snow is my favorite,” BonDurant said. “[The winter] can change the scene.”
The All Weather Gang made an impressive showing at the Lockhart Gallery due to the sheer number of paintings they displayed. According to Lockhart Gallery Sitter senior Bridget Stahlecker, the displays typically in the gallery are much smaller than the All Weather Gang exhibit. In total, 53 landscape paintings, which were all created with either oil on canvas or watercolor, were on display.
In addition to the large variety of paintings, the All Weather Gang itself is an interesting mix of individuals. The members of the group come from a variety of occupational backgrounds, including members who work in engineering, graphic design and music. Despite their differences, the members clearly respect and appreciate each other, leading to a wonderful atmosphere to discuss their projects.
The All Weather Gang also creates a space for like-minded artists to discuss projects together. When searching for potential new members, the All Weather Gang has a list of qualities they look for that would work best with the group.
“[We look for] humility, an open mind to learn from others and an openness to improve,” BonDurant said.
“It’s good to be with people who are better than you because they challenge you,” Killelea said.
Gallery Director Cynthia Hawkins recognized the importance of featuring groups like this one in Geneseo.
“It’s important to expose local and regional artists to build a relationship with the Geneseo community,” Hawkins said. “Painters don’t just paint what they see. They paint themselves.”
Overall, the All Weather Gang showed how a dedication to camaraderie and creativity can lead to extraordinary projects. They manage to create truly spectacular works that showcase local scenes in a variety of locations and seasons.