Arapahoe Libraries is proud to host art exhibits each month at Eloise May, Koelbel and Smoky Hill libraries. Library galleries offer the community a place to view a variety of art at no cost while also providing visibility to local artists. A volunteer art selection committee selects exhibits based on artistic quality, variety of exhibits and the suitability of format for each exhibit space.
Have a question about the galleries or interested in showcasing your art? Visit the Art Galleries page for more information.
Leslie Miller is a mixed-media artist who is inspired by shape, color, pattern, and texture. Leslie loves the way they all come together to create a feeling or atmosphere, sometimes even a sense of motion, all within the confines of the two-dimensional surface. Leslie’s work these days ranges from representational to abstract and everything in between.
What is your favorite piece in the show and why?
My favorite piece is The Stained Glass Blues. I love the colors, the shapes, and the inspiration they gave me that carried me through the entire piece to completion.
What motivates you to create?
I find the act of creativity extremely engaging and absorbing. When really I get into the flow of the piece, it’s hard to stop (and I’ve ruined many a painting because of this). If I’m happy with the finished work, it provides a fulfillment that few other things can.
Who are your biggest artists influences?
I love many of the old masters, especially Redon and Matisse and have even copied several Monets! But these days, I am most inspired by living artists such as Erin Hanson, Jed Dorsey, Marla Baggetta, Bob Burridge, and so many more I couldn’t possibly list them all.
What message do you want your art to convey to viewers?
I don’t really have a message, but I always hope my paintings will delight or intrigue the eye of the viewer. I love it when someone Stops to look, steps back, then steps in close, and finds things in the painting to keep them interested for more than just a passing glance.
Mara began sewing when she was 11 years old, but didn’t start quilting and making wearable art until the 90’s. Although she has made some large quilts, recently she has been focusing on small pieces where she is able to experiment using different fabrics and quilt patterns. Her small pieces are usually 20 inches x 20 inches - the perfect size for Challah covers, wall hangings, or table toppers. She has been collecting Judaica fabric for over 20 years and uses these fabrics or Hebrew writing in her Challah covers. Mara has donated two of her larger quilts to Hadassah for fundraisers.
When asked which is her favorite piece in the exhibit, Mara answers “That’s easy. Since the show is in a library, it’s ‘Oh Me, Oh My, I’m 75’ since this quilt features books on shelves.” Mara made this quilt for a friend of hers who was celebrating her 75th birthday and was also in her book club. Mara was able to embroider the titles and authors of some of the books that were read in the club over the years. The owner of this quilt loaned it to Mara to be able to show it in the exhibit at the library. “Stars Over the Water”, also on loan by the owner for the quilt show, is a close second for Mara’s favorite quilt in the show.