Posted October 5, 2010
Orwick’s “Honoring the Ancients” is a series of paintings inspired by the exploration of ancient rock art sites in the rugged sierras of Baja, Mexico and well as sites in North America. Her watercolor, mixed media and pastel paintings will be on exhibit in the current display area of the Idaho State University’s Eli M. Oboler Library through Friday, Nov. 12.
Orwick’s fascination with rock art evolved from an appreciation for the sense of individuality, animation, and the use of color by the ancient painters. Her research into Baja rock art quickly led to Harry Crosby, the modern-day explorer who discovered more than two hundred previously undocumented sites known only to the local ranchers. Crosby’s discoveries led to further hunter-gatherer archeological research by the Mexican government. His discovery of the “The Great Murals—Los Gran Murales” is now the official title of the region.
The monumental scale of the stunning pictographs in “The Great Mural Region” rival the finest cave paintings in the world. The paint from the sensitive, dynamic, sophisticated figures has been carbon dated to nearly 10,000 years old, making them among the oldest, most unique, significant concentration of ancient rock art in the Americas. As the fifth largest rock art region in the world, it has now been designated as a Heritage Site by the United Nations.
The captivating story of Crosby’s discoveries is beautifully written with fascinating photographs, detailed drawings, and excellent maps in “The Cave Paintings of Baja, California—Discovering the Great Murals of an Unknown People,” first published in 1975. Crosby has invited Orwick to paint from his 2,000 digitized photos and exquisite illustrations by his wife, Jo Anne, in the UCLA Archives. Orwick’s exhibition includes paintings from the Crosby Expeditions.
Raised on the vast North Dakota prairie, Orwick is inspired by her fascination with mountains, horizons, sea and landscapes, and scenes from her travels. For eighteen years she cruised on a motorcycle to the end of many roads: from British Columbia to Nova Scotia, to Florida and to the deserts of the Southwest. She traveled extensively from Alaska to Mexico and to the Panama border in Central America. Since moving to Pocatello in 1996, Orwick’s award-winning paintings have been exhibited in local and national shows. Her artistry as a Master Gardener and landscape designer has won many awards for the Juniper Hills Country Club and private gardens.
The exhibit is free and open to the public and may be viewed during regular library hours.
For more information, including schedule changes, contact the library at 282-3248.