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Art at Work: New HPAAC program promotes artist's work at businesses

JW Wieser stands next to one of his paintings on display through the end of March. Star Gazette photo by Jane Lightbourn

When JW Wieser was a boy, his parents took him traveling around the United States. Those travels took him to historical places and, in particular, where the American Indians lived.

Those impressions of the American Indians never left Wieser. They are still with him today - in his artwork.

Six paintings of Wieser's are now on display at Provincial Bank, 1309 Vermillion St., through the end of the month. More are at Affinity Plus Credit Union, 131 North Frontage Road, and Millner Family Chiropractic, 215 Ramsey St. The displays are part of the Hastings Prescott Area Arts Council (HPAAC) Art at Work endeavor -- which promotes the work of area artists by displaying them at businesses. The artwork can be viewed during regular business hours.

Wieser, originally from Iowa, describes himself as self-taught. He was in law enforcement for 27 years before and returned to this area 17 years ago. His paintings and other artwork were always with him.

His paintings are bold -- he said he likes that word because it draws attention to the bright colors he uses. His mediums are acrylics, pastels, watercolors, and he also does sculpture.

"I like it all," he said.

When Mecca Manz, visual arts director for the HPAAC, contacted him several months ago about this new program, he was excited, and still is.

"This is so good for me" he said, "and the community is rich in art."

As the people view his works, Wieser wants to know their opinions.

His studio is in the basement of his home, and he often puts a painting in the living room, "right next to the TV. It always catches the attention."

He works from photos, and sketches - "I do a lot of sketches," he said.

"It does become part of you,"?he said.

His favorite medium is the acrylics.

"They are fast drying, they are bright, and they are easy to work with," he said.

Wieser's work is permanently displayed at The Carousel, and he will part of the art show Saturday, March 24, at The Emporium.

Hastings resident/artist Beth Bacon also has some of her work on display at Affinity Plus Credit Union through the month as part of the Art at Work program.