Creativity on Campus
Housed in historic Parmenter Hall on the Baldwin City campus, the Holt-Russell Gallery features art by students, faculty, and local, national, and international artists.
Students exhibit their work in an annual juried student art show. In addition, students work as preparers, curators, and organizers of their senior exhibitions.
Second floor of Parmenter Hall
706 Dearborn St.
Baldwin City, Kansas 66006
Monday – Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Closed weekends and major holidays
American Oddities | Nick Gabois
Oct. 6—27, 2023
Artist Reception | Friday Oct. 13, 4—6 p.m.
Nick Gadbois’ “American Oddities” centers on unusual roadside attractions, mostly from the heartland of America. The paintings he creates are based on photographs, many of which are taken by the artist. Gadbois doesn’t create scenes from the imagination, but paints scenes from real life that already appear surreal; his work is about Everyday Surrealism.
The subjects chosen show the offbeat, quirky, playful, and inventive side of the American spirit. Subjects such as the world’s largest rocking chair, the giant strawberry, Cornhenge, Carhenge, Wall Drug, and the world’s largest ball of twine show a creative ingenuity that is uniquely American. Gadbois’ work celebrates the roadside attractions and natural phenomena that bring pleasure to everyday life.
The son of a commercial illustrator, Nick Gadbois was introduced to surrealism and pop art as a teen. In the late 1980s he began painting and exhibiting at galleries in Los Angeles. There he started to use cement as a medium for painting. He received an undergraduate degree in art from Portland State University in 2004 and his graduate degree from Vermont College in 2008. His paintings have been exhibited in San Diego, Portland, Seattle, Los Angeles, Santa Fe, Taos, and Kansas City. His cement work led to public art projects. In 2008 he was commissioned to create 13 precast cement panels for the Tri Cities Cancer Center in Kennewick, Washington. He was awarded an art project to create an exterior precast cement mural for the University of New Mexico, which was completed in 2013. The artist currently lives and works in Ottawa, Kansas.
Oil on Canvas, 36″ x 48″
All Views at Once | Donald Louthian
Sept. 5—29, 2023
Exhibition Reception, Sept. 15, 5—7 p.m.
Donald Louthian was chair of the Baker University Art Department from 1955 to 1963. After receiving his MFA from the University of Kansas in 1952, he served in the army in Japan.
While in Japan, Louthian developed a love of Asian art from the Edo Period, which is evident in his paintings. Many of Louthian’s abstract landscapes also use isometric perspective, a technique of representing space in which all lines are parallel to each other and there is no horizon line or vanishing point dictating their orientation. This creates a spatial ambiguity within his work that
entices the viewer to define their own interpretation of the composition.
Donald Louthian’s work is almost entirely derived from nature. The artist created paintings of imaginary landscape models constructed in his studio while at the University of Kansas. In later works, Louthian relied on observation and interpretation of the site. He balanced the atmospheric quality of fog, mist, and light with a well-disciplined use of texture and color throughout his works.
This exhibition is dedicated to the life and memory of Donald Louthian. Although associated with Baker University for only eight years, Louthian never lost affection for Baker University’s art program. Over the years, Donald and Evelyn Louthian have donated numerous works to the art collection. This commitment continues with the donation of many of the works on display in this exhibition.
Donald Louthian (1929-2022)
Acrylic and Collage on Panel