“Walkabout” Held at KTOO Through March

BY JERRY SMETZER
Reprinted with permission

Juneau writer and painter, Jerry Smetzer, continues his show “Walkabout—A Young Woman’s Journey of Exploration” at KTOO through March. The show consists of 10 20 inch by 26 inch oil on canvas paintings. Each painting includes a framed block of about 250 words of text to help set the context. The word “panel” refers to the combination of the painting and the context. Panels are in sequence beginning with Panel 1—Savannah, and ending with Panel 10—The Tree of Life.

Smetzer describes the show this way: “There is a time in a young man or young woman’s life when he or she must break away from all the supportive social and familial structures of childhood. Walkabout means the freedom to engage the wonders, mysteries, and terrors of the world on his or her own terms, and in ways only the lone walker can make sense of. The hero of the Walkabout on display at KTOO is a young woman named Cassie. In the 10 panels, we follow her as she engages some of the characters and events in history that inform and illuminate our humanity.”

“This project is only the beginning of a longer term effort to explore storytelling along with the multimedia mixing of digital arts and the messier traditional arts done by hand,” Smetzer says. “We are seeking grants to support the work, and I have written the first short story featuring an introduction to Cassie, the main Walkabout character. In addition to promotional materials, we have developed a book of paintings and text bound in red cedar. These are available for sale at Hearthside Books and Alaska Robotics downtown. We are also building videos of the show; we will be developing a soundscape for gallery viewers that will be available via smart phone; and, finally, we are developing training materials for teaching the methods used.”

As part of the March First Friday, “Walkabout’s” writer and painter, Jerry Smetzer, gave tours and answered questions at KTOO. Jerry will also give personal tours on request during KTOO business hours. “Please contact me to set up a time to meet at the KTOO Studios. Tours usually take less than 30 minutes,” Smetzer says.

For more information, contact Jerry Smetzer at jsmetzer@gmail.com, or on the phone at either (907)-586-1215, or (907)-723-1943.

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