January 27, 2021
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True Colors

Melvin Peterson Gallery’s latest show keeps it in the family
Jan Rhea Unfried, Connie Bell & Nikki Pritchett have distinct styles, but their bright use of color brings their art together.

While Connie Bell and her two daughters Jan Rhea Unfried and Nikki Pritchett all are painters and artists, the Evansville natives never considered doing an exhibit together — though they had collaborated a lot early on — until others began requesting it.

“None of us actually decided we were going to show our art together, because none of our pieces are anything alike,” says Bell. “People who have asked us have asked because we are related.”

Bell and Pritchett both agree that Unfried, an adjunct professor teaching watercolor at the University of Evansville, was the catalyst for getting the three of them to show work together.

“Jan was actually the original artist,” says Bell. “She started probably when she was 5 years old diligently drawing and painting.”

Their current show, Complementary Colors on exhibit at UE’s Melvin Peterson Gallery, came from the idea that the three artists’ work all complements each other, though they each have a unique and individual style.

“A lot of our art comes down to color,”says Pritchett. “We each have our subject matter we like working on, and that’s what we bring to the show are those types of things.”

There is no specific theme for the show; instead Bell, Unfried, and Pritchett all chose pieces that would complement each other’s styles. The common unifying aspect throughout their portfolios, however, is their use of bright colors.

“The reason I thought of Complementary Colors is that we all work pretty brightly, and I feel like we complement each other,” says Unfried. “Even though they are very different, they complement each other and they are colorful.”

Sept. 4-Oct. 20
Melvin Peterson Gallery, 1935 Lincoln Ave.


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