3 artists create more than 30 paintings centered around the community of Lead

The late evening news on KEVN Black Hills Fox Sunday
Published: Jul. 20, 2022 at 5:30 PM MDT
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LEAD, S.D. (KEVN) -Approximately 35 paintings are ready for display at the Lead-Deadwood Art Center all with the same theme centered around the Homestake Mine and the community of Lead.

“Lead is one of the most unique communities in the whole state of South Dakota with its terrain and history and we thought it would make a great subject for an art show,” stated Executive Director of the Lead-Deadwood Art Center, Karen Everett.

Dorothy Snowden has been painting for about 50 years and is one of 3 artists who approached Everett with the idea to showcase art that tells the history of the town.

“The group of artists that are involved are from the northern hills. We’ve spent a lot of time in the are just exploring different neighborhoods, old buildings, taking things that are often overlooked and painting them,” explained Snowden and added that one technique the artists used to paint is called Plein Air.

“So, that means we take our isles, we drive around, find good locations, set up, and everyone’s in a different direction painting what’s in front of them. Usually, it’s a couple of hours we’ll have a piece of work produced. They’re small pieces and sometimes those are used to produce larger pieces in the studio,” said Snowden.

Leaving the studio behind to paint the community outside, Snowden and the other artists were able to immortalize in real time some of the structures around town.

“In that process, we meet a lot of people from the neighborhoods. They want to see what we’re doing. A lot of times it’s an old house and they know the history. So, we’re kind of saving some of that history that would have been lost otherwise,” said Snowden.

However, it’s the mining history that runs rich through the small town that really inspired the art.

“Gold districts and boom and bust kind of communities fell to the wayside and the longevity of Homestake has been stellar as far as gold mining in this country’s history. Now it’s transitioned from mining for gold to searching for dark matter and neutrinos, but it still has a big impact on the state locally and even nationwide,” said Snowden.

She hopes spectators are able to take away from the collection the impact the Homestake Mine will forever have on the community.

The display will be featured at the Lead-Deadwood Art Center until August 19, 2022.

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