This exhibit of portraits includes paintings, a print of a painting (the painting is in private collection), and one photograph. The individuals depicted are all people who live, or lived, in Minnesota. They represent nurses and staff working in community clinics and social services, people who surmount difficult emotions and afflictions, artists, actors, entrepreneurs, a curator, and an elder who speaks 5 languages (but not English). They’re folks speaking their truth and doing their best to make large or small improvements in other peoples’ lives.
Capturing faces which might otherwise go unseen as we pass by people on the street, these portraits honor unsung heros from the fabric of our community. They represent a utopian vision of cohesion and unity among people.
About the Artist
Pamela Gaard, b. Minneapolis 1955
My artistic interests began early in life with drawing and stitching. Today I’m primarily interested in painting, drawing, photography and collage. My portraits are large-scale color-driven paintings, created in delicate layers of acrylics — made by observing and sketching the live model, and then using photography as a tool to catch the likeness of the individual.
I made my living in public health for 40 years; thus my interest in health and wellness. For the past 10 years, I’ve explored community engagement through portraiture. My portraits include immigrants and the elderly, friends, colleagues, co-workers, and other artists and art workers. Collectively, they bridge communities of neighbors living in Minneapolis.
Several elders who are fluent in languages other than English have asked me to create their portraits, and these were made with assistance from interpreters in Somali, Oromo, and Amharic. I’ve felt humbled and honored to create these portraits.
At the State Capitol building, St. Paul, MN