Bliss Fishing

with Charles Hardy, Roger McCoy, Josh Butler, and Araan Schmidt
Oct. 4 – Nov. 12
Artist talk Friday, Oct. 7 at 5:30 p.m.
Sponsored by Lancer Livermont, Nancy & Kelley Burford, and Mary & Dean Harris

Joseph Campbell always told his students to “Follow your bliss.” Good advice, but with one problem—most people never figure out what that is. The four of us have. For each of us fly fishing and art rank high. A third related love is teaching, especially art. Through these shared blisses we have become good friends. We spend a lot of time together on the Grand Mesa (or plotting to get onto the Grand Mesa) to fish. On the way up to our favorite spots, and after a long day of fishing, we cast into each other’s minds, motivations and ideas. We don’t talk about art—but that’s all we talk about. The acts of fly fishing, art making, and teaching require a tenacious faith that there is something meaningful lurking out in the unknown: a trout off the shores in a dark lake, art deep in the waters of the unconscious or a budding creator inside a hopeful beginner. The trick is to coax them up into the known, to bring them out of the darkness.

Josh Butler is a professor of drawing and printmaking and Araan Schmidt is a professor of sculpture at Colorado Mesa University. Charles Hardy and Roger McCoy both taught art at CMU (then Mesa State College) for many years.


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