John Romang's "168 Hours" in ink and resin will be on display at his exhibition, "Illuminations," opening Saturday at the Yeiser Art Center. The opening reception will give attendees a chance to try their hand at painting on a Plexiglas lightbox.
If you’ve ever gone to an art show and thought, “I could do that,” you won’t want to miss out on John Romang’s upcoming exhibition.
Visitors to the show, titled “Illuminations,” will have the opportunity to paint on a Plexiglas light box during the opening reception at the Yeiser Art Center.
Romang, a Paducah-based artist and instructor, said he almost always tries to include audience participation in his exhibitions.
“When you’re involved, you are more connected to the show than if you’re just looking at a painting,” he said. “I try to do that with my fourth graders (at Metropolis Elementary School) and they seem to love it.”
While the work in the exhibition is also composed of painted light boxes, Romang said that it’s different from what viewers will be doing with the interactive box.
Romang uses ink and resin to create his large, abstract pieces. The process of layering the media and waiting for it to dry can take hundreds of hours, he said, and every piece is titled according to the amount of time it took to complete.
“With abstract work, I want the viewer to have the most input in what they see. I feel giving these (pieces) certain names would detract from the viewer’s experience,” Romang said.
Romang started out creating pop art, but has recently transitioned to abstract work because he enjoys seeing how viewers interpret it.
“I get more enjoyment out of seeing what people feel toward my work. A pop art piece is very understandable right away,” he said.
The artist said he stumbled upon his current medium as he was working with ink and resin. He found the idea of layering intrigued him, and began trying his hand with Plexiglas.
“There was a lot of trial and error until I was able to figure out how that medium works,” he said. “If you drilled and broke a panel, you had to restart. ... I ruined hundreds of panels before I figured out how to do this correctly.”
The opening reception will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. on Saturday. Along with the interactive painting, it will feature music from D.J. Urban Kobb.
“The opening night is the night to be there. ... It’s going to be the night to experience the show to the fullest,” Romang said.
Contact Laurel Black, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8641.
Want to go?
What: “Illumination,” an art exhibition by John Romang
Where: The Yeiser Art Center, 200 Broadway
When: 5 to 7 p.m. Saturday, March 2.
The exhibition is free and open to the public.