Nemeth opens 2021 season with Solien exhibit

Regional painter T.L. Solien invites viewers to "see the sky" through July 17 at the Nemeth Art Center.

T.L. Solien's "Greensleeves" is an oil and enamel on canvas. (Courtesy of Nemeth Art Center, submitted May 4, 2021)

The Nemeth Art Center’s 2021 season opens with a full-gallery show “T.L. Solien: See the Sky.”

Curated by Christopher Atkins, the show is a compact survey of Solien’s career as one of the region’s most prominent and prolific artists. According to a news release, the exhibit is organized around overlapping themes such as literature, art, landscape and autobiography.

The show opens through July 17 at the Nemeth, 301 Court Ave. in Park Rapids, with an artist reception on Thursday, June 10.

“See the Sky” presents significant paintings, sculptures and works on paper that have not been displayed before, say organizers. “They represent Solien’s distinct, Neo-Surrealist vocabulary accented with exaggeration, multi-colored layered collage and a sometimes furtive sense of humor.”

The works include examples of Solien’s work inspired by novels – from Herman Melville’s “Moby-Dick” to Flannery O’Connor’s “Good Country People.” He also shows a knowledge of art history with recognizable influences from such artists as Duccio, Picasso and Winslow Homer as well as pop-culture references like sports heroes and Disney cartoons.


Solien’s landscapes are said to evoke the forests of northwestern Minnesota and North Dakota, where he was born in 1949 and where he and his wife once lived. He studied art at Moorhead State University and earned a master’s degree at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Later, he taught at universities in Ohio, Iowa, Montana and Wisconsin, retiring in 2020.

For more information, contact Tessa Beck at, or visit, or On Instagram, check out @nemethartcenter, @tlsolien or @eyesears.

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