Art in the Time of Covid: A Virtual Celebration of Art to Benefit Zion National Park

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For more than a decade, the Zion Forever Project has hosted the Zion National Park Plein Air Art Celebration in Zion Canyon. This year has demanded something different, a way to celebrate art: apart but together. We’re calling it: ART IN THE TIME OF COVID. This year’s paintings come from six celebrated artists. Created during the time of Covid, the artwork captures the beauty and wonder of this place we all love deeply. Your purchase directly supports our work in this amazing landscape known as Zion National Park.


Arlene Braithwaite – pg 4-7

Bill Cramer – pg 16-19

PURCHASING ARTWORK 2020 Online Art Show and Sale September 16 – November 8, 2020 Each of the 18 paintings shown on the following pages are for sale at the listed prices to the first buyer who commits to them.

Kate Starling – pg 24-27

Michelle Condrat – pg 12-15

John Cogan – pg 8-11

Roland Lee – pg 20-23

To inquire about a painting, call the Zion Forever Project at 435-772-3264 during business hours. To purchase, state your interest in a specific painting, and we will settle with you on a form of payment which will include shipping costs. You may place a 48-hour hold on a painting, in which case the sale must be consummated within 48 hours or, the painting will be made available again. All Sales Benefit the Zion Forever Project and the Top Funding Priorities of Zion National Park. 3

ARLENE BRAITHWAITE Cedar City, UT Pastel painter Arlene Braithwaite earned her master’s degree from the University of Utah. Upon graduation she enjoyed a 32 year teaching career as an art educator at Southern Utah University where she was awarded the University’s “Distinguished Educator” Award. Arlene was also recognized as “Art Teacher of the Year for the State of Utah” by the National Art Education Association. Upon retiring, she was able to focus her full attention on pastel painting. Her work has been shown in solo exhibitions at the Springville Art Museum, the St. George Art Museum, the Utah Museum of Natural History, and Zion National Park’s Human History Museum. Arlene’s paintings have also appeared in the magazines: Pastel Journal and International Artist, and the books: Art of the National Parks: Historic Connections, Contemporary Interpretations; and Painters of Utah’s Canyons & Deserts. Additional recognition has come through first place and director’s awards in statewide and regional exhibitions. Her pastels have twice been selected as Grand Prize winners at the Escalante Canyon Plein Air Art Festival, and she won the People’s Choice and Employee’s Choice Awards and several Purchase Awards at Zion National Park Plein Air Invitationals.

“When painting Zion, I’m attracted to the dramatic and the transitory in the inanimate reality of rocks, sky and water,”


Day’s End, Court of the Patriarchs 24 x 36 Pastel ©2020 A. Braithwaite $4,820

“This view is below the falls along the Pa’rus Trail, as it nears the Human History Museum. I have painted these drops several times during the day but not at the end of the day. For this piece, I made two separate evening trips for color studies and reference photos. In the studio the color intensity and the temperature change were exaggerated to add drama and energy to the scene.” 5

“This painting was inspired by a reference photo taken early in the morning on the West Rim Trail, looking toward Angel’s Landing. The morning was clear but I added the clouds to give contrast with the solidarity of the formation and direct the viewer’s eye. The distant sky is dark and foreboding but the clouds around the pinnacle seem to be dissipating in the morning sun, resulting in conflicting messages to the hiker on the trail.” Morning Clouds, Angels Landing 18 x 24 Pastel ©2020 A. Braithwaite $2,160 SOLD


Ice Falls, Kolob 18 x 9 Pastel ©2020 A. Braithwaite $810 SOLD “Winters in Zion can be frigid, resulting in icy falls that document the line of descent of slowly dripping water in the day that solidifies into rigid icicles after the sun sets. I saw this formation while on a cloudy drive in Kolob. The way it defined the contours of the red cliffs forced a stop to paint.”


JOHN COGAN Farmington, NM John Cogan paints almost exclusively in acrylic working on canvas or panel. He strives to capture creation’s splendor in the landscapes of the American Southwest. His style is unique: consisting in thin underpainting and thicker finishes, rich pigments, glazes, scumbles, and attention to detail. His focus is on color and the transient effects of light. Zion National Park is one of John’s favorite painting destinations; its quiet beauty and cathedral-like setting have inspired many of his best paintings. He has participated in and exhibited at Zion National Park’s Plein Air Invitational from 2010 through 2020 winning multiple awards including the Foundation Award in 2015 and the Superintendent’s Award in both 2017 and in 2011. The recent book Art of the National Parks features John’s paintings in the section on Zion National Park. John served as Zion Artist-in-Residence during April of 2019. In addition to these exhibitions, John’s paintings have been shown for a number of years at Mainview Gallery’s Winter/Spring Artwalk in Scottsdale. John’s paintings are part of the permanent collections of the Grand Canyon, the James Museum of Western and Wildlife Art, Raymond James Financial, Xanterra Corporation, Zion National Park, Bernalillo County, Citizens Bank, Conoco Phillips, McGraw Hill, San Juan College, and Eastern New Mexico University, among others. John has 27 pieces in the collection of the Sultanate of Oman.

“This year as I went through my studies and my reference material on Zion, I became enamored of the walls of sandstone. It is true the formations are well-known (and often painted by myself and others), but more of the canyon consists of walls rather than temples. And when I study them, I realize each is individual in height, markings, shape, color and nuance. When complemented by another aspect of nature, the walls seem to take on a life influenced by their surroundings. I paired them here with the river and autumn trees, the setting moon, wildlife and the unique formation at Sinawava known as the Pulpit. I hope this year’s pieces will bring my viewers into a closer relationship and intimate dialog with this ancient canyon of stone.” 8

“This wall forms the backside of Angels landing. It towers far above the Virgin River and catches the morning sunlight. The intricate sculpting of the wall by ice, rain, wind and snow give it a character worth painting. And it has been subtly colored by the desert varnish of mineral salts washing down the rocks. Underneath its watchful form, the Virgin River threads through the stands of cottonwoods and other trees which populate the valley floor.” The Wall at the Big Bend of the Virgin River 24 x 30 acrylic ©2020 John D. Cogan $6,000 SOLD


“The Temple of Sinawava is a quiet place with spiritual overtones. The name ‘temple’ suggests a place of quiet meditation. But the rock formation looming up over the Virgin River speaks of something else. Aptly named ‘the Pulpit,’ it is easy to imagine Jonathan Edwards or George Whitfield, Bible in hand, climbing to its apex and thunderously preaching. The illumination is ethereal as sunlight filters through the canyon from the south and creates an ambiance of a natural cathedral, complete with a glowing wall, better than any stained glass. And as required for any cathedral, there are the attendant acolytes in the form of deer.”

The Pulpit at the Temple of Sinawava 18 x 24 Acrylic ©2020 John D. Cogan $3,700 SOLD


“The celestial orbs have always fascinated me, especially the moon. In 8th grade I built a telescope to watch it and study its ‘seas’ and craters. Even now I love gazing at it and keeping track of its phases. In this westward-looking view the gibbous moon is sinking behind a wall of Zion, as the rising sun splashes light over the rock. This morning dance of sun and moon, the greater and lesser lights, was a natural theme for me to paint.” Sunrise Moonset (at the Wall of Zion) 12 x 16 Acrylic ©2020 John D. Cogan $1,700 SOLD 11

MICHELLE CONDRAT Salt Lake City, UT Michelle Condrat is a native of Utah and has lived there for almost her entire life. After earning her Art and Art History degrees from the University of Utah, she continued with her artistic journey painting the unique landscape of Utah and the Southwest. When she is not working in the studio, she is spending her time in the outdoors, driving through mountain ranges, fishing on lakes, and hiking through canyons, where she gathers inspiration and subject matter for her paintings. Michelle is known for her unique painting style of intense color choices and linear blended strokes. This style gives motion and depth to her paintings while capturing the feel of the western landscape with a fresh and new visual perspective. “Painting in Zion National Park lets me do more than just see a beautiful place, it lets me experience and observe it in an artistic way, from the bright blue desert sky above, all the way down to the details of the cracks in the rocks.� 12

Canyon Royalty 24 x 36 Oil ©2020 Michelle Condrat $6,500 “The Great White Throne is one of the most iconic formations in Zion Canyon. I love the way it looks as it basks in the autumn sunlight and looks out across the land as if it is the guardian of the canyon with its magnificent presence and magnitude.”


Good Morning Beautiful 18 x 24 Oil ©2020 Michelle Condrat $4,200 “There is an unparalleled beauty that happens when the sun rises and its light starts to shine through Zion Canyon. It is a sight that many have experienced, but few will ever forget.”


The Distant Watchman 10 x 18 Oil ©2020 Michelle Condrat $1,600 SOLD “I use all of my senses as I look down the canyon at the distant Watchman. I hear the flowing of the river nearby, I see the sparkle of light upon its waters, I feel and smell the soil beneath my feet, and I taste the crisp air as I take in a deep breath while thinking to myself, ‘There’s no other place I would rather be than right here, right now.’” 15


Growing up in southern California, Bill always had an interest in exploring nature and creating art. As an experienced rock climber, he spent much of his youth enjoying the more vertical places of the American West. This gave him a perspective of the world that few others would ever experience. He received a fine arts degree from California State University Long Beach in 1989, and later moved to Prescott, Arizona with his wife Michelle to be closer to the scenery they both enjoyed. It was there that Bill discovered the joys and challenges of landscape painting, his outdoor experiences providing much of the insight and inspiration expressed in his art. Today with his wife and two daughters, Sarah and Megan, Bill divides his time between family, art, and outdoor pursuits. “I’ve been painting in Zion every year since the very first Zion Plein Air event and it never ceases to amaze me. There are always new places to explore and things to find. The park is rich with forms, colors and compositions. There’s beauty around every corner. It’s truly an artist’s paradise. When scouting around for a subject to paint, I look for something that catches my eye – a unique bit of light or color, an arrangement of shadows, or other things that typify Zion. I look for ideas that suggest the scale and wonder of the place, but can still fit on a rather small flat canvas. It’s a challenge I’m happy to accept!”


Canyon Poetry 30 x 24 Oil ©2020 Bill Cramer $5,100 “This painting depicts morning light streaming across the canyon near the Organ, the base of Angels Landing, and the canyon floor with the Virgin River. It’s mesmerizing to watch how all of the little and large things are slowly revealed by the rising light. It’s poetry without words.”

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Dance Partners 24 x 14 Oil ©2020 Bill Cramer $2,600 SOLD “I thought these two entwined cottonwoods beneath Angels Landing, looked like a pair of dancers. I was entranced by their movement and fall colors.”


Zion Gold 12 x 16 Oil ©2020 Bill Cramer $1,450 SOLD “This is an autumn scene looking down Zion Canyon from near the Big Bend area. I believe that’s Lady Mountain in the distance. This has always been a favorite area of mine, although I haven’t painted this view too often. I just like hanging out there!”

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ROLAND LEE St. George, UT Roland Lee has explored the National Parks for over 40 years, capturing images with sketchbook and paintbrush. From his cabin on the east border of Zion National Park, Roland has intimately explored the peaks and canyons of Zion and his original paintings can be found in over 1700 museum, bank, corporate, university, and private art collections. He was recently awarded the Utah Governor’s Mansion Medal for contribution to the arts in Utah. Roland’s paintings have been selected for exhibit by the National Watercolor Society, the Transparent Watercolor Society of America, Arts for the Parks Top 100, and Paint the Parks Top 100 shows which toured America. Roland’s paintings are featured in his new 160 page hardcover book: Discovering Zion, A Pictorial Guide to the Landscape, Geology and History of Zion National Park. Forty of Roland’s Zion Canyon landscape paintings are included in the book: Mukuntuweap, Landscape and Story of Zion Canyon. He is also featured in the books: Art of the National Parks, Painters of Utah’s Deserts and Canyons, and Contemporary Western Artists. Roland served on the Board of Directors of the Zion Natural History Association and Zion National Park Foundation at Zion National Park for twelve years. “For 40 years I have explored the canyons and cliffs of Zion National Park carrying a sketchbook and paintbrush, in every season from summer heat to winter snow. I have also travelled the world and painted everything from the South Pacific islands’ sandy beaches and crystal waters to Switzerland’s rocky alps and roaring rivers. But for me, returning to Zion is like returning home. To walk along the rippling Virgin River, under a canopy of golden leaves, with Zion’s cliffs soaring above is an experience difficult to match. The earth is a wonderful place, and I thank God every day for the privilege of seeing it, exploring it, and painting it.” 20

Essence of Zion 21 x 29 Watercolor ©2020 Roland Lee $6,495 SOLD

“Autumn in Zion is spectacular. The warm glow of Cottonwood leaves as they turn from green to gold shows off their color against the rich dark reds of the shadowed cliffs. This view is looking south between the tall cliffs from an area just south of Temple of Sinawava. It is amazing how just a short walk leaves canyon visitors alone to view Zion’s wonders.” 21

Eternal Paths 21 x 29 Watercolor ©2020 Roland Lee $6,495 “The shuttles stop at Temple of Sinawava, where hikers begin the stroll up-canyon and into the Zion Narrows. I like to leave the shuttle crowds and begin walking down the canyon along the Virgin River where just a five minute walk will leave me practically alone. The canyon walls at this point are fairly close on both sides of the river. “Eternal Paths” is looking back towards the west canyon wall. At a point just on the right edge of the painting, visitors can often see a tall narrow waterfall coursing over the cliffs—especially during the rainy season. This painting explores the varnish stains and characteristics of the cliff face itself as it rises from the river bottom.”


Morning Reflections 10 x 24 Watercolor ©2020 Roland Lee $1,195 SOLD “Exploring Zion’s main canyon on foot is my favorite way to enjoy its majesty. Trails along the Virgin River allow hikers to get both intimate and grand views of the Park. “Morning Reflections” features Cathedral Mountain and Mount Majestic in the morning light as cliff reflections show in the quiet morning flow of the Virgin River.”


K ATE STARLING Rockville, Utah Kate Starling is an oil painter who lives and works in the canyons of southern Utah. Having earned a degree in geology, she spent years working outside as a geologist and National Park ranger. After formal academic art training from 1988 - 1995 she devoted her work to painting the landscape. Educated in the importance of painting directly from observation she has spent years painting outside learning the way light plays on the land. Now she splits her time between the roadways and trails surrounding her home and studio.

“My work is pretty obvious. However, there are things that I want to say. One is the environmental ethic of living gently, not bothering the land or other people; living simply. There is also a celebration of what we have visually to look at, which is decreasing with time. I am practical, and I do understand that we live in the world and use things, but I love wild land, and I’m serious about trying to preserve what we have left.”

Kate’s paintings portray the natural world and focus on communicating a sense of place, atmosphere and dazzling light, retaining the immediacy of the painting experience. She knows the strength of emotion that the landscape seen in a particular light can trigger in her – she strives to paint in such a way that memory and emotion are triggered in the people who see her work.


Angels Landing 40 x 30 Oil ©2020 Kate Starling $9,800 “The first time I came to Zion as a young adult I backpacked the West Rim Trail, and my friends and I dropped our backpacks and climbed to the top of Angels Landing on a side hike. It was spectacular and exhilarating. I wanted to make a painting that talks about how vertical this landscape is. From Scout Lookout you see how high you will climb and how far you can see.”


Towers 20 x 24 Oil ©2020 Kate Starling $4,800 “The Towers of the Virgin is one of my most favorite places to paint. All of us paint this view for demonstrations during Zion Plein Air. This year I decided to make a larger studio painting of this spot.”


Desert Path 12 x 12 Oil ©2020 Kate Starling $1,595 SOLD “This is a place I walk to frequently, and last fall I was struck by the deep foreground shadows in contrast to the bright yellow bloom. It was all set against the layers of mesas in the distance, and the cool blues and hot yellow was an inspiration.”


ART AND THE STORY OF ZION NATIONAL PARK By Lyman Hafen It wasn’t until the late 1850s that Anglo explorers and mapmakers finally ventured into Zion Canyon and discovered the beauty and majesty long known to the native Southern Paiute people. In the early 1860s, several small settlements began cropping up along the upper Virgin River reaching to the mouth of Zion Canyon, including Rockville and Springdale. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had ventured south from Salt Lake City to establish the settlements and build a life along the river. Isaac Behunin was one of those original pioneers. He ventured farther upstream, built a cabin, and started a farm at what is today the site of the Zion Lodge. During long evenings in the canyon twilight, he would open his scriptures and equate their words with the awesome towers of stone that soared above him. He was among the first to call the canyon Zion. For him and the other Latter-day Saints who settled there, it was a place of survival and sanctuary. Soon others discovered the canyon for different reasons. With eyes tuned to the beauty and the scientific value of Zion, men like John Wesley Powell, Clarence Dutton, William H. Holmes, Thomas Moran, Jack Hillers, Frederick Dellenbaugh, Charles Savage, and Alfred Lambourne, came with the objective of studying it, painting it, photographing it, or writing about it. In the process they fell in love with the place and spared no words, paint, or photographic plates in evoking its beauty and sharing it with the rest of the world.

Thomas Moran made his first sketches in the canyon in 1873. Ever since, Zion has been a serious subject for painters of every medium and style, and they’ve been coming to the canyon for nearly a century-and-a-half. For the past ten years, that legacy has been celebrated annually during the first full week of November as two-dozen excellent artists converge in the canyon for the Zion National Park Plein Air Art Invitational. In 2020, however, the annual art event in Zion has been modified into a virtual event featuring the work of six of the canyon’s most beloved artists. The event celebrates not only the role original art played in the establishment of Zion Canyon as a national monument in 1909, but also the crucial role of art in the promotion and popularization of the park over the decades. Art has been a part of Zion’s story for centuries, beginning with the prehistoric rock art still visible today in many locations. When the Anglo explorers arrived, they were accompanied by photographers, but the black and white technology of the time could not convey the amazing colors of the canyon to a skeptical public in the east. That’s where the work of the great painters came in. And even their work often fell on incredulous eyes. In the summer of 1903, Frederick S. Dellenbaugh, who had accompanied John Wesley Powell on his second expedition through the Grand Canyon in 1871–72, found his way back to Springdale where Thomas Moran: The Rio Virgin Southern Utah, 1917 Private Collection


he made several forays into Zion Canyon and produced a series of oil paintings that would be exhibited at the World’s Fair in St. Louis the following year. Dellenbaugh’s paintings created quite a stir at the 1904 World’s Fair. It happened that a young man named David Hirschi stopped in St. Louis on his way home from an LDS mission in Europe. He’d been raised in Rockville, at the foot of the Zion towers, and he knew every hump and hollow of the astonishing terrain surrounding his boyhood home. It was a pleasant surprise to him, as he visited the Utah pavilion, to learn that these wonderful paintings of Zion were a highlight of the fair. But he was alarmed when he saw that many skeptics insisted there could be no such place on Earth, that the paintings must be fake. The young man stood resolute and informed everyone within the sound of his voice that there most certainly was such a place—that he knew its every hill and cliff. Only five years later, in 1909, David Hirschi’s backyard would become Mukuntuweap National Monument, and ten years after that, Zion National Park. The time was fast approaching when people the world over would discover its superlative beauty.

Through a fortunate series of events in 2007, the Zion National Park Foundation (now the Zion Forever Project) was able to purchase one of Dellenbaugh’s rare 1904 World’s Fair paintings. It had been discovered in an attic in Tennessee and was listed for sale at an antique auction near Knoxville. With barely a week’s notice, the Foundation was able to secure funding from the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation and arrange for a bidder at the Maynard Dixon: The Cliffs of Zion, 1940 auction. Within two weeks, Private Collection the painting had come home to Zion where it is now part of the park’s permanent collection. Countless artists have revealed the majesty of Zion Canyon over the years. This year, the Zion Forever Project honors six of those artists in our virtual show entitled: ART IN THE TIME OF COVID. As we all pass through this challenging time together, we are pleased to share these images of a place we all love deeply. And we hope that this wonderful and inspiring art will play a role in the healing and recovery we are all going through right now. And we look forward to emerging into a post-Covid world where we can return to the traditional on-site and in-person art events we’ve come to love in Zion.

Frederick Dellenbaugh: Zion Canyon, 1903, Zion National Park Collection


DONATE Even if you are not able to bring home one of these amazing pieces this year, please consider a donation to the Zion Forever Project. Your support leaves a legacy that will last for generations to come. Visit ZIONPARK.ORG

OUR MISSION The Zion National Park Forever Project engages in collaborative efforts with federal agencies, gateway communities, and guests to create connections to the Greater Zion Landscape that will lead to lifelong stewardship. By establishing business and agency partnerships, encouraging collaborative innovation, expanding educational opportunities, funding tangible projects, and leveraging resources, the Zion Forever Project is building the next generation of leaders and stewards. 30

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