Art Exhibition "En Route" Opens at the KiMo

Bill Mohr

A new art exhibition at the KiMo Theatre features the works of artists who focus on their surroundings, creating vignettes of the places they travel to and from in their daily lives.

Opening with a reception for the artists from 5-8pm on Thursday, September 1, the exhibition in the KiMo Gallery will be on display through November 6.

Artist Bill Mohr lives in the Bridge Boulevard neighborhood and is captivated by life there as reflected in the unique hand-painted signs and the diverse population he observes as they go about their daily lives.

Mohr, who grew up on his family's farm in Bucks County, PA, is attracted to the colors of everyday life. After a stint in the U.S. Army, he earned his BFA from The Philadelphia College of Art (now The University of the Arts), and his MFA from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY, both in Photography.

His interest in the diverse lives, cultural and colors of people was heightened while living in the different environments to be found in Hawaii, Arizona and New Jersey before arriving in Albuquerque on the last day of Balloon Fiesta in 1976. For 30 years he worked as a freelance commercial photographer, and is now a full-time artist.

Visitors to the KiMo Gallery will be able to see, and possibly recognize, the many South Valley locations featured in his work, such as "Ericks", the acrylic on hardboard featured here. Most recently, Mohr's work has been exhibited at Las Puertas and 105 Gallery, in a juried show in Seattle, and in an on-line exhibition for photographers,

For Midwesterner Benjamin J. Marxen, the images of life in Brooklyn, NY inspired the works seen in this exhibition, and example of which is his oil on canvas, "Foggy Brooklyn Night #1", seen here.

Born in Wisconsin, and raised in the Mississippi River town of Dubuque, Iowa, his journey to big city life led him to establish an artist co-op space in the historic D.U.M.B.O. neighborhood (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) in Brooklyn, where the J-train clattered past his window numerous times each day. Fascinated by the juxtaposition of the hard edges, color and noise of modern urban life with the sun's piercing rays as they shown through the edges, his work captures all of the chaotic life that surrounded him.

With evidence of artistic talent shown early in life, Marxen took his first college-level course at age 11, later receiving his fine arts degree from the Minneapolis College of Art Design.

Combining the styles of classical oil painting, a genre not typically used to depict urban life, with mixed-media inlaying within the surface of his paintings, resulting in his own unique patent-pending form of four-dimensional art. is an example of what visitors will see in this exhibition.

Marxen's work has been widely exhibited in the NYC area, and in Toronto, Frankfurt, Istanbul and online, where he was awarded first place in the United Creators 2nd Annual Online Arts Competition. He currently resides in Minneapolis and his most recent work reflects his last years in Brooklyn, with all of the color and chaos that defines that area.