A man and woman entering a bright yellow tax and another woman, seen from the waist down, wearing a dangerously high-cut skirt, catch the eye as one walks into the Hays Arts Center, 112 E. 11th.
The pair of works by Hays stained glass artist Stan Detrixhe capture a feeling in Kansas at the time he painted them, he said as he worked Tuesday afternoon with Brenda Meder, director of the Hays Arts Council, to hang his show “Intermittent Musing.”
Called “The Doctor’s Office Paintings” after the bar where they once hung, Detixhe created them in the 1980s, after Kansas voters decided to repeal the state’s prohibition on open saloons. Prior to 1987, liquor by the drink was available only by membership in a private club.
“In that time period, they had just changed the law so that if you wanted to go get a drink, you could go to an actual bar. You didn’t have to belong to a private club. So this was right in the beginning when they all switched over and people were giddy about their freedom, so to speak,” he said.
“I kinda wanted to put a little bit of a cosmopolitan twist on it,” he said of the city scape with towering skyscrapers.
The point of view of the paintings is looking up, as if looking through the windows of the bar, which was located in the basement of what is now Coldwell Banker, 1001 Main.
The arts center will have a reception at 7 p.m. Friday for Detrixhe and the two other artists showing works through March 30 — “Unwrapping Life,” Terri Horner’s mixed media, and dance photography by Mike Strong.
Detrixhe’s show is retrospective of his 40-year career with stained glass. He made the 17 stained-glass windows in the chapel of Thomas More Prep-Marian High School and has created or restored windows for clients as well as creating abstract pieces and sculptures.
Among his works at the HAC are insect sculptures shown last summer in “Bugland” at the Sandzen Gallery in Lindsborg. Detrixhe said he created the ants, beetles and other bugs while “messing around” with melting glass in the kiln.
“I wanted to challenge myself and see what some of the extremes would be to produce something, and one of the things that I came up with was insects, because you have the easy part, the body part. But then you have these real fragile extensions coming off the thing and how is that even going to work?
“Once I did one, I decided to do another one. And they just started happening,” he said.