Several works from one of southern Idaho’s best-known artists will be on display for two months at the Herrett Center for Arts and Science.
‘LaVar Steel – Highlights From the Permanent Collection’ will be displayed in the Herrett Center’s Jean B. King Gallery from Sept. 12 through Nov. 25. Steel was one of the first employees hired by CSI’s founder, Dr. James Taylor, in 1965. At first, he taught almost all the art classes offered by the new college and eventually went on to chair the art department. Steel retired in 1997 and died in 2016.
“LaVar was a Renaissance Man,” said Mike Green, one of Steel’s first employees and an eventual art department chair himself. “He did it all, including construction, welding, casting, all types of art, and repairing whatever was broken. He even built CSI’s first pottery kilns before we could afford to buy them. I can’t think of much LaVar couldn’t do.”
Steel’s artworks include pottery, paintings, and mixed media. He donated dozens of pieces to the Herrett Center over the years. Exhibit Manager Joey Heck says approximately 20 to 25 pieces, some of which are quite large, will be in the display.
A free public reception will be held to kick off the event between 7 and 9 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 12 in the Jean B. King Gallery. For more information, please contact the Herrett Center at 208-732-6655 or visit the website at www.csi.edu/herrett.