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Style: Folsom | El Dorado Hills

Railroad Art Exhibit at Gallery at 48 Natoma Opening in July

Jun 22, 2015 02:36PM ● Published by Brenna McGowan

All aboard for the next exhibit at the Gallery at 48 Natoma! 

The railroad has long been an important part of Folsom’s history since the Gold Rush days.  Now artwork that commemorates those historic connections will be displayed in the exhibit, On the Right Track, from July 10 through August 27.

Three premier railroad artists work will be featured, including impressionist oil paintings by Gary Symington, grand traditional oils on canvas by Patrick Karnahan and incredible scale model displays created by Scott Robertson. 

Patrick Karnahan has been oil painting since he was eight years old.  In addition to painting wildlands, Karnahan has been capturing the history of the American railroads on canvas for more than 20 years. He has completed a calendar on American railroads, and his artwork has been featured on numerous book and magazine covers. He also promotes art education for children in local schools. “It’s satisfying,” he says. “Usually, I’ll sell my paintings and won’t see them again. What I’m doing becomes part of the community.” 

For 15 years, he worked for the USDA Forest Service as a seasonal firefighter and later as a graphic artist and public affairs specialist. He remains under contract to prepare paintings for Forest Service posters and publications. His paintings, based on years of personal experience on the fire lines, are full of highly accurate detail. They also reflect his emotional commitment to wildland firefighting and to conserving our public wildland treasures.

Gary Symington has been a full-time illustrator and graphic designer for over 40 years, but his real passion has always been painting in oils on canvas.  After painting primarily landscapes for many years, his most recent work reflects his interest in trains, with particular attention paid to the quality of the surface textures and discolorations of metal on the engines. 

His illustration clients have included L.L. Bean, Windows magazine and McDonalds. His commercial work has been shown with the Society of Illustrators and in the Strathmore Paper Graphics Gallery. Gary received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from Syracuse University, and studied at Sir John Cass School of Art in London, England.

Scott Robertson is an acclaimed railroad model maker and has been creating railroad scenes over a culmination of many years.  His ongoing project called the ND&AC (Never Done & Always Changing) Model Railroad is On30 scale with construction that started in 2004 and is still evolving.

The fictitious town of Hanging Rock is a combination of two modules (30”x48” each) depicting a mountain town somewhere in the Sierra Mountains.  “My model railroad does not represent any specific prototype, and it takes its scenery from many different geographic settings in the western United States. The era is sometime in the mid-20th century in places that are being logged over and mined out.” Most of the structures are scratch built. Scenery is mostly natural materials collected in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, including real rock--not plaster castings.  His models are truly an inspiration of both art and engineering combined.

In the adjacent Community Gallery at 48 Natoma, the adult art classes held at the 48 Natoma Art Center will be featured.  The center offers classes to in a variety of art subjects including Chinese Brush painting, oil and acrylic painting, photography, ceramics, watercolor, drawing and more.  Classes are open to the public and are offered for all ages and skill levels.

The public is invited to celebrate both exhibits at the free opening reception on Friday, July 10, from 6-8 p.m., with refreshments, wine and live guitar music by Daniel Roest.

The gallery is free and open to the public and art is available for purchase.  Hours are Monday through Friday from 9-5, with additional hours Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 6-8 p.m.  Free tours can be arranged by appointment.  For more information contact Cindy Abraham, (916) 355-7285, or

Post information and picture courtesy of Gallery at 48 Natoma.

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