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Renaissance inspired painter, Ken Wiley, opens show at Artists Guild

— “When it came down to it, I looked at history and knew I loved it but I didn’t know if I would become stale to me in 30 years, so I thought making art would still be new to me and challenging for me,” Wiley said.

After graduating with his masters degree, Wiley took a job at the North Country Community College (NCCC) as one of the first faculty members.

“When I came to interview for the position, the sun was shining and it was a clear day and of course there was snow everywhere, it looked so beautiful so I took the job and I’ve been here ever since,” Wiley said.

At NCCC, Wiley taught an array of art courses, such as drawing, design, painting, photography, art appreciation, art history, sculpture courses and more.

“One opportunity I had at the community college that I couldn’t have gotten if I had worked at, say, the university in Plattsburgh is I got to teach so many courses that at the time I had never studied, so I learned by figuring out how to illustrate the subjects to my students,” Wiley said. “I learned more in the first years of teaching than I ever had learning on my own for nine years of my craft.”

“It was a different course all the time,” Wiley said. “So you never got tired of what you were doing.”

One of the things Wiley said might surprise people who come to his show is that he is not an “Adirondack Artist.” His subject matter, though it often consists of Adirondack images like local homes, objects that one might find in any Adirondack home or an outdoor scene, is a mix of places he has traveled to. He’s painted a market place in Tanzania; a night scene at a modern looking gas station which jumped out to him like a futuristic space station with an air of science fiction; portraits painted in an Andy Warhol style such as “Dance Master,” and most anything he sees that jumps out at him to be recreated.

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