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Listening To The Silence

Artist(s): 

Bill Berryman

About the Artist

With a love for drawing that began when he could first hold a crayon, Bill Berryman knew that art was going to be a major part of his life’s story.
As an artist, Bill draws and paints those subjects that he knows and loves most.

His most recent work consists of drawings and paintings that are inspired by the Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, KY. Bill’s work is representational and realistic in nature and is created on site and in the studio. He works primarily with pencil, pen and ink, and watercolor, producing portraits, landscapes, and narrative studies.

Bill exhibits his work, speaks, and conducts workshops throughout the commonwealth.

A native of Winchester Kentucky and a graduate of Morehead State University, Bill has been an art instructor at Sayre School in Lexington KY since 1986.


Artist’s Statement

To be able to take a thought, feeling, or observation and translate it into an image on paper is a most rewarding and magical experience. When I was younger, the focus seemed to be centered on technique. As I’ve matured as an artist, the focus has become all about the message. Technique of course is the means by which I express myself, and is important, but my hopes are that the viewer looks through the application of media and into the heart.

My current work is inspired by the Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill Kentucky. It is composed of representational drawings and watercolors of portraits, architectural studies, still life and animals.

The Village is a place that is very special to me, and my art helps me to share it with others.

I think the artist Edward Hopper expressed it best when he stated, “If I could say it in words there would be no reason to paint.”

 

“Listening To The Silence”

 

A series of drawings and paintings inspired by the Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill Kentucky, created by artist Bill Berryman.

 

This series of art was first conceived as an idea 30 years ago and took that period of time to become a reality. The title comes from a statement that Thomas Merton from Gethsemane Abbey once made after a visit to Pleasant Hill before restoration.

The artwork itself doesn’t focus on any one aspect of the village, but attempts to encompass the whole. There are portraits, animals, architectural details, as well as interior and exterior views in different seasons, as well as visual narratives.

Much time and research have gone into this endeavor, which has assisted me in creating a very personal and authentic body of work.

I have been asked often “Why Shaker Village?” It’s a long story.

I first visited the restored village with my family as a boy, and it captured my imagination. I can honestly tell you that I do this because I have to. This series is by no means complete; it is ongoing and evolving as I encounter new discoveries with each visit.

The United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing, created Pleasant Hill to be heaven on earth, until they reached heaven. I am drawn to the village often, and when I’m not there I find myself thinking about it.

The Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill is a very special place and a Kentucky treasure. The interpretive staff at the village has been a delight to work with. They have spent countless hours sharing their knowledge and expertise with me.

Special heartfelt thanks goes to Donna Phillips, Georgie Riddell, Tim Prosser, Vivian Yeast, Jonathon Todd and Twana Patrick for their patience and amazing gifts and encouragement.

I invite everyone viewing the exhibit to make time for a visit to Pleasant Hill, and to sit and listen to the silence; you might be amazed at what you hear.

Bill Berryman

 

Visit Bill Berryman's website