The art of Jane Liedman to be featured in 4 Pillars Gallery

NEW ULM — Jane Liedman’s World of Art exhibit is coming to the Grand’s 4 Pillars Gallery, Friday.

Dozens of Liedman’s paintings will be on display starting Friday, Oct. 15 and will remain in the gallery through Friday, Nov. 12.

Liedman died last year at the age of 98. In her lifetime she created hundreds of paintings in a variety of mediums. Her family said she was drawing up to the time of her death. She was never formally trained in art but for years she sold her paintings and sometimes sold on consignment.

To this day, her family is not certain how many of her paintings she sold during her lifetime, but it was in the hundreds.

Her son, Lowell Liedman, still had many of her paintings in his home and it was decided to exhibit some of her work for the public.

Staff photo by Clay Schuldt Liedman often painted scenes, but when she did paint people it tended to be women in 1920 and 1930s era clothing. Her son Lowell believed it was a reminder of her youth.

Jane was born in St. Paul and graduated from Central High School in 1940. From an early age, she was engaged with art. She would scrapbook with her father and paint plates with her mom.

Jane never formally studied art. She did study as a nurse at the University of Minnesota but left school to marry her husband Lyle on Dec. 31, 1943. Lyle was serving in the South Pacific but came home on leave. For the next 24, Jane was an Army wife — living in Germany, San Francisco, the DC Corridor, and Governor’s Island in New York Harbor. During the time she raised two sons, Lowell and Jay.

Lowell said when she was raising kids, his mom did not pursue art but after her husband retired from the Army and moved to Ames, Iowa her passion for painting caught fire.

Jane was seriously painting at the age of 40. When she moved to Arkansas she became president of a 600-member art group. Her career as a painter continued into her 90s.

Over the decades, Jane painted in several styles with many subjects. Early in her art career, she used oil paints but later switched to watercolors. Her family believes she switched because Jane found watercolors to be more of a challenge.

A lot of her paintings were of natural outdoor locations. Building exteriors were common. Lowell said his mom would often be hired to create a painting of someone’s home or barn. Jane would sell her works at a relatively low price. Sometimes the paintings would sell for the cost of the materials used to create them.

Lowell said kept the price low to ensure they sold and did not start piling up. She was not concerned with making a profit because her husband’s retirement from a career in the Army kept the family comfortable.

Jane’s family continues to be impressed with her talent. Looking through all her works, Jane had a talent for depicting light the way it appeared in nature. Most of her paintings feature realistic lighting and shadowing. Jane could blend any color to create a realistic color scheme. She carried this talent all her life. In her final year, she was still able to create impressive drawings using only colored pencils and a blank piece of paper.

Following Jane’s death last year, the family wanted to show her art to the world.

“We wanted to share the beauty she left in the world,” her daughter-in-law Ingrid Liedman said. “We think people would enjoy it.”

A special gallery opening event will be held at 5 p.m. Friday, October 15 at the Grand. The exhibit will be on display through Nov 12. Gallery hours are 11 a.m to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.


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