Evening on the Ice
Terry Redlin's Last Painting
Growing up in eastern South Dakota, I loved to hunt and fish. In the winter, the lakes turned into small towns bustling with activity. One of the best forms of entertainment was ice fishing! Vehicles would drive out to the "hot spots" and while the fishermen would swap stories and unwind from a long work-week, everyone would watch and wait for a bite!
Terry Redlin was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2007 at the age of 70. Shortly after his diagnosis, he announced his retirement from painting. This painting, "Evening on the Ice", was Terry’s last. Terry began working on this painting in 2005, but he was struggling. He simply could not finish it. In 2007, Terry’s wife, Helene and son, Charles, finally convinced him to stop working on the painting and allow it to go to press. After a lifetime as an artist, the disease stripped him of his ability to paint - something that was so second nature to him he once said, “To me, painting is like breathing”.
Terry Redlin struggled for nine years. He lost his ability to paint. He lost his memories of his loved ones. And, on April 24, 2016, he lost his life.
This painting does not look like the other paintings in Terry Redlin’s collection. The colors are different. The level of detail is different. The overall style is different. It is a reflection of a very difficult time in Terry Redlin’s life.
The original will only be on display for the month of September to bring awareness to Alzheimer's disease. The Redlin family is not ready for it to become part of the permanent collection. The painting, to them, is a reminder of Terry's struggle; so for now, they have asked that the painting be tucked away, in safe keeping.
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