Commissioned Work From Local Artists

By Terrah Baker

NWA has many talented artists. Because of this, each week holds multiple exhibitions, galleries and opening receptions where art lovers can catch a glimpse, and even buy a pre-made piece, of original art from local artists. But several Fayetteville Underground members help remind us that art can be made to fit our own personal needs, lifestyles, and purpose through commissioned work. These artists remind us that commissioned art, while often forgotten, is still a viable option for our unique needs, from some of the best talent in the area.

Commissioned WorkHank Kaminsky — Kaminsky shows his jewelry and small garden sculptures at the Underground, but most of his income actually comes from commissioned work. The largest of such pieces is the Peace Fountain in front of Fayetteville’s Town Center on the square. The Fulbright Memorial on Block Street is also one of Kaminsky’s commissioned works, along with a number of portrait busts of dead heroes around the U of A and the state. Recently, he was commissioned to make a ceremonial mace for the Business College.

He said he’ll take any commissioned work that fits his spirit and aesthetic. Take the Crazy Chester award for Roots Festival he made last year as one example. “It is really a perfect rendering of my idea of the shape of the universe. I did similar awards for Mitchell Communications and the Hilton International organization,” he explained. Contact Kaminsky to see if your idea fits with his spirit at

Cheri Bohn — Bohn combines tree roots and stained glass to create unique creatures, such as a giant turtle or flying dragons. She’s made birds, butterflies, fires, fish and much more with naturally twisted and then refinished tree roots, and original and colorful stained glass. Her work is also functional, with geometric lamps where customers can commission special colors. A display of her work is kept at the Underground, and she can be contacted at 479-790-5670 for any special orders, or creatures, you’d like to see created.

Edward Pennebaker — Pennebaker is an artist who uses lighting and glass sculptures in much of his work. He does commissioned work with his glass art work for homes and businesses alike. A chandelier he made for a home in Rogers was 76 inches tall, 50 inches in diameter made of 447 glass pieces. Another, for a customer in Austin, Texas, was 40 inches tall, 30 inches in diameter and contained 128 glass pieces. Each piece of glass is hand crafted individually and put together for a frenzy of light, color and texture, with the customers choosing the color to match with their already existing decor. To contact Pennebaker, call him at 870-553-2592.


Categories: Galleries