Eltje Degenhart, "Spring View," 2003, acrylic on canvas, 36" x 48".
By Colleen MacPherson
For Eltje Degenhart, retirement from teaching in 2001 has not only freed up time to paint but it has also allowed the artist's unique style to develop in a specific direction. "That feels good," he says. "When you're teaching, you deal with a lot of art appreciation and different techniques and that's both good and bad, the bad being that your own work starts to jump around a lot."
Now, from his home at Kenosee Lake, "an oasis" in southeastern Saskatchewan, Degenhart is exploring the varied landscape at different times of day and in all four seasons, intent on seeing it just as colour and elements of design. Colour in particular maintains the painter's interest in the land near his home: "There is something about the prairies after a storm. It brings out the purples and limes. And of course during canola time and flax time, the colours are absolutely beautiful." His recent work will show October 18 to November 12, 2003 in Continued Progressions at the Pacif'ic Gallery in Saskatoon. Degenhart also exhibits at the Assiniboia Gallery in Regina and at Calgary's Gainsborough Galleries.