Works of art depicting a children’s story are on display at 2nd Ave. Art Guild in Dodge City.
On Friday, September 24, the gallery kicked off with the work of watercolor artist Mary Anne Hendrix who created several panels of artwork for a story titled “We’re Going to Kansas”.
According to the Arts Guild, the story, rooted in the history of the pioneers who settled in Kansas in the late 1800s, was written by Cimarron High School English teacher Lynne Hewes, illustrated by Hendrix, carved in “stone” by Luminous Neon of Dodge City, and set up as part of an indoor playground attraction at Cimarron Crossing Park in Cimarron.
The guild said Hendrix’s style is whimsical, with bright colors that create an sometimes humorous, sometimes poignant image of what the main character, a little girl, sees when her family’s Prairie Schooner visits Kansas.
“We had a great time with this project,” said Hendrix. “We actually decided to do another one, this time based on experiences on the Western Cattle Trail on the way to Dodge City.”
Funding for the project comes from a grant from the Community Foundation of Southwest Kansas.
“They said it was one of the most interesting projects they’ve funded,” Hewes said. “This is probably the most unusual. The idea began when Beverly Benton, a social worker interested in history, decided that the park needed information to accompany its new “covered cart” attraction. She wanted the kids playing there to learn a little more about what that wagon stood for.
The town of Cimarron organized an “unveiling”, in the presence of representatives of the Santa Fe Trail Association, once the signs were created and installed.
After the painting was revealed, the children approached and began to read the story.
“That’s what I envisioned for it,” Benton said.
Hendrix’s watercolors are still on display at 2nd Ave. Art Guild.
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