Cafe at Prairie Lights

  • Books-Eyes-Red

    works by Sean Downey

    On view April 1 - May 5 2019

    This work began as a reflection on our relationship to screens, and the screen’s relationship to, and origins in, painting. Images have always been, in part, an attempt to crush space and time and to lure viewers into an Orphic journey, or down a click hole. My current work takes a variety of images, some deeply personal and others fairly arbitrary, and attempts to fuse them by processing them through a very handmade approach to painting. Image transparency has become a way to collage vertically and to compress the composition, in the way a movie poster might try to crowd the highlights of a complicated story into a single, static image. Confusing the source imagery has also become a way to keep my approach and response hovering in an abstract space even as the images remain for the most part recognizable. The resulting syntheses ideally create new meanings that are fundamentally non-verbal(visual), yet invite interpretation(language). The recent glazed ceramic works in many ways mimic my painting process (some of the flatter works can look more like gouache paintings than glazed ceramic); clay, however, allows for some of the image gestures to become physicalized as low-relief textures, forms, and undulations. The attempt to paint (in underglaze) a flat image over a curved or textured surface produces some of the same opportunities that arise when painting vertically collaged, transparent images. The in-between state I am after in both the ceramics and paintings also seems to mirror my own lived experience, as a consciousness attempting to sift through and make sense of a nonstop onslaught of thoughts, memories, and experiences.

    Sean Downey received his BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute and his MFA from Boston University. He has had recent solo exhibitions at Steven Zevitas Gallery (Boston, MA), LaMontagne Gallery (Boston, MA), and University of Massachusetts Lowell. Downey is a 2013 recipient of the Blanche E. Colman Award, a 2014 recipient of a Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship, and a 2015 MacDowell Colony Fellow. He is a founding member of the Boston-based collaborative kijidome, winner of the 2015 James and Audrey Foster Prize from the ICA Boston. He currently lives and works in Fairfield, IA, where he is an Associate Professor of Art at Maharishi University.

    For inquiries and sales, please contact

    Hilary Nelson, Gallery Curator at TIMESCLUBGALLERY@PRAIRIELIGHTS.COM

    Please join us for a closing reception with the artist on Sunday May 5th in the cafe from 5-6:30pm.



  • Shifted Perspective works by Michael Villarreal

    On view March 3 - March 31 2019

    In my current work, I am focused on objects I remember from my childhood. Taking from old photos, found images, and my imagination, I create sculptures and paintings of objects that make up a home to reference memory, time, place and self.

    The objects I make are re-contextualized to allow them to transcend their original purpose. Through this, I foster a new narrative for each piece while maintaining the basic visual familiarity. A transformation of material creates a visceral response to the objects being depicted. I want to solicit this response to items I find or know, manipulate or construct, and create connections through the relationship of these objects.

    Michael Villarreal received his Bachelors of Fine Arts from Texas State University in 2013 and a Masters of Fine Arts at the University of Nebraska- Lincoln in 2017. He has exhibited in solo exhibitions at Art Palace Contemporary Art Gallery in Houston, TX and Doane University in Crete, NE. His numerous group exhibitions include Barbara Davis Gallery in Houston, TX, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art in Omaha, NE, LA Artcore in Los Angeles, CA, and DATELINE in Denver, CO. His work has been featured in publications such as Huffington Post, New American Paintings, and recently, Art Maze Magazine Issue 9. Future exhibitions include a solo show at Iron Tail Gallery in Lincoln, NE. He was a resident at the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center in 2017, as the recipient of the 2017 Lincoln Mayor's Arts Awards - Kimmel Award, and a recent recipient of the 2019 Nebraska Arts Council Individual Artist Fellowship. Villarreal currently lives and works in Lincoln, NE.

    For inquiries and sales, please contact

    Hilary Nelson, Gallery Curator at TIMESCLUBGALLERY@PRAIRIELIGHTS.COM

    Please join us for a reception on Saturday, March 30th in the cafe from 6-8pm.


  • A Line Is A Wish Your Hand Makes

    works by Gaby Collins-Fernandez

    On view February 4 - March 3 2019

    Gaby Collins-Fernandez is an artist living and working in New York City. She holds degrees from Dartmouth College (B.A.) and the Yale School of Art (M.F.A., Painting/Printmaking). Her work has been shown in the US and internationally, recently in "Third Space" a survey of contemporary art at the Birmingham Museum of Art, Alabama, at Recess, Baltimore; and in New York at el Museo del Barrio, Pratt Institute, Nathalie Karg Gallery Honey Ramka, and Danese Corey. Her work has been discussed in publications such as The Brooklyn Rail and artcritical, and was recently featured on the video interview series, Gorky's Granddaughter. She is a recipient of a residency at the Marble House Project in Dorset, VT, a Fellowship at Yaddo, Saratoga Springs, NY, and a 2013 Rema Hort Mann Foundation Emerging Art Award. Collins-Fernandez is also a writer whose texts have appeared in publications such as the popular Painting on Paintings blog, The Miami Rail, and The Brooklyn Rail. Her translations of a group of Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz's sonnets with Kimberly Kruge was published in 2015 in Riot of Perfume Magazine. She is a founder and publisher of the annual magazine Precog, and a co-director of the artist-run art and music initiative BombPop!Up.

    For inquiries and sales, please contact

    Hilary Nelson, Gallery Curator at TIMESCLUBGALLERY@PRAIRIELIGHTS.COM

    Please join us for a reception on Friday, February 8th in the cafe from 5pm - 7pm.


  • Apparent / Appearance

    On view December 3, 2018 - February 3, 2019

    Jim Shrosbree earned his MFA in Ceramics at the University of Montana, Missoula. His work is exhibited widely and is in the collections of the Des Moines Art Center, Detroit Institute of Art, Los Angeles County Museum, Edythe and Eli Broad Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art Honolulu, Mint Museum, Daum Museum of Contemporary Art and the University of Iowa Museum of Art, including a commissioned sculpture permanently installed in the U of I main Library Commons south lobby in 2014.

    Awards include grants from the National Endowment for the Arts (Midwest Fellowship), Iowa Arts Council, The Pollock-Krasner Foundation and residency fellowships at MacDowell Artists Colony and Yaddo.  Shrosbree is represented by Paul Kotula Projects in Detroit, MI.

    Jim Shrosbree is Professor of Art at Maharishi University in Fairfield, Iowa.

    For inquiries and sales, please contact

    Hilary Nelson, Gallery Curator at TIMESCLUBGALLERY@PRAIRIELIGHTS.COM

    Please join us for a reception with the artist on Sunday, December 9th in the cafe from 4pm - 6pm.