Posted February 27, 2014
The Eli M. Oboler Library of Idaho State University is presenting the work of local artist Roy Reynolds through the end of April.
Reynolds finds his artistic vision in the landscape, flora and people of eastern Idaho. His subjects range from local architecture to street people, from farm fields to iris gardens, from nudes to American Indian festival dancers—all of which he interprets as testaments of his community’s beauty, character, identity and sense of place.
Reynolds grew up in Idaho Falls when it was a rough little western town full of eccentric characters who served as inspiration for much of his later work in art.
He left Idaho Falls to study at the University of Idaho and later at the Art Center School in Los Angeles. He returned to Idaho Falls and spent years as a cowboy, and part-time artist, while working on the side as art director for singer/songwriter Carole King. His cowboy experience is explored in many of his western paintings.
After working as an illustrator and graphic designer for the Idaho National Laboratory for 25 years, Reynolds retired, found a studio and started to paint and sculpt full time. In 2000 he was commissioned to create a bronze sculpture on the Idaho Falls greenbelt. “The Fur Trader” stands on Memorial Drive in downtown Idaho Falls, depicting one of the men who paved the way for Lewis and Clark.
Reynolds was featured with Larry Blackwood at the two-man exhibit “The River Remembers” at the Art Museum of Eastern Idaho in 2007. His 32 paintings from the exhibit are on permanent display at the O.E. Bell Building in Idaho Falls. Many of Reynolds’ bronze sculptures that immortalize figures of the West are on permanent display at the downtown Bank of Idaho in Idaho Falls.
Asked about his style of painting, Reynolds said, “If I knew what I was doing, it wouldn’t be worth doing. It would be mechanical. What I like about painting are the surprises that happen. Lots of time I struggle, but at other times, I’m pleasantly surprised at what happens. Those magical moments are what keep me painting.”
Reynolds’ artwork at the ISU Oboler Library can be viewed during regular Library hours: 7 a.m. – 1 a.m. Mondays –Thursdays, 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Fridays, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. –1 a.m. Sunday.