“Three Mile Radius”: Looking at the world within our own backyard

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It seems that too frequently, we get caught up in our technology. We are a generation obsessed with our phones, computers, tablets, headphones, etc. We actively seek ways to shut out the world, and in the process, we often lose sight of the things that are right in front of us. Jacqui Larsen and Lance Larsen, married artists, have worked together to help break the technological binds within their own lives. What resulted from this collaboration were large mixed media pieces painted by Jacqui, and poetry written by Lance Larsen, Utah Poet Laureate, currently on display at the Springville Museum of Art. This exhibit, titled Three Mile Radius, aims to document the people, places, and things local to Springville, UT. They gather their inspiration from the things they find within three square miles of Jacqui’s studio space, located in Springville.
“The rules they set for themselves: 1. Step outside and wander like Johnny Appleseed or Sacagawea. 2. Keep within three miles of ground zero (Jacqui’s studio). 3. Nose to the sky, feet to the ground, eyes to the everything. 4. Take notes in images and words”. These were the agreements they made in preparation for the series.
Jacqui Biggs Larsen is a painter who often works in mixed media. This particular exhibit contains pieces in which she combines oil, acrylic, and collage on panels. She expressively captures mood with use of vibrant colors. Her work features predominately monochromatic color schemes, although with a vibrant splash of color that energizes each piece. My personal favorite is The Brookside Panaroma, a quadriptych (a piece including four panels) that has lovely blues and greens with a touch of complementary oranges and yellows.
Jacqui’s husband, Lance Larsen, is currently serving as Utah Poet Laureate (a Governor approved advocate for literature and the arts throughout the state of Utah) from 2012-2017. He teaches literature and creative writing at BYU, and is currently an associate chair for the university. Using fairly direct language, inspired by the moments he has exploring, his poems also help inspire Jacqui’s paintings. She will frequently take specific words or elements and paint them literally into the image, creating another layer of depth to their intricate collaboration.
This exhibit is currently on display, and will run through October 22, 2016. It is inspiring and wonderful to see people share their collective thoughts in order to create beautiful artwork together. I highly encourage all UVU students to get out and explore their own surrounding area. We should all take time to put down our phones and unplug from the world for a few minutes. Even in our corner of Orem, we can see some amazing things that will inspire as we step out of our comfort zones and explore the places within walking distance to UVU.