Jordan West, Abby Shaner, Mary Anne Donovan, Janine Crum, and Kat Rakel-Ferguson

Nature can be many different things. It is the environment around us, the ecosystem sustaining us, and the instincts woven into our very being. Nature can help create a culture, a cuisine, a religion; but in its fullness, it is also full of contradictions. It creates in the same breath that it breaks down. It inspires awe as it does fear. It is the deepest ocean in the same way it is the farthest star. Our relationship with it is similarly complex. It is key to our survival, yet we destroy it. It fosters our wellbeing, yet we isolate ourselves from it. It is untamable, yet we still try to contain it. Somehow all of these things can be true.

And somehow, the art created in its name can address all of these things. From the Hudson River School capturing the sublime beauty of untouched America, to the Land Artists creating ever-changing works from mud, stone, and grass, nature has been the subject and the tools of artists since the dawn of time. Whether realistic or heavily stylized, representational or abstract, artists have always been attracted to depicting nature and their own personal or cultural relationship with it. 

This fall, 1628 is thrilled to be showcasing 27 primarily local and regional artists in Deeply Rooted, Deeply Held, which speaks to the continuation of this millennia long dance between artists and the world they find themselves in. It explores our extraordinary planet and our connection to it – the emotions it inspires, the comfort (or danger) it brings – and urges us to appreciate and protect it, to closely hold what has been rooted within us for so long. Featured in this show are artists Jordan West, Abby Shaner, Mary Anne Donovan, Janine Crum, and Kat Rakel-Ferguson.




Jordan West is Cincinnati, Ohio born and raised and he has been photographing local wildlife for the past 10 years. He finds inspiration in the natural world and in the many forms of life that inhabit it. The world is a vastly beautiful place, completely flourishing with life and Jordan does his best to expose that beauty. He hopes to spark an interest in nature to those who view his images. He aims to both educate and promote wildlife conservation with his photography.

“I capture unique images of local wildlife including songbirds, deer, foxes, coyotes and everything in between going about their daily lives. I use my images to show viewers just how many species we have surrounding us, at times even in our own backyards. Above all else, I have a focus on birds of prey. In my free time I volunteer with a local nonprofit raptor rehabilitation organization, RAPTOR Inc. These amazing birds were some of the first to spark my interest in local nature. I use my images to donate back to the birds. I normally produce a variety of framed prints from 5x7s up to 18x24s.”




Abby Shaner is the owner of WoodSolStone Studio, a female owned moss art studio specializing in 100% preserved moss, mushrooms, ferns and flowers. 

“Zero Maintenance is required for our art. Zero watering, zero light, zero green thumb needed. We create and design custom moss art for your home, office or sacred space to bring in the beautiful green elements from nature onto your walls.

“WoodSolStone is nature in a frame. All the beautiful gifts from Mother Earth, sustainability grown and preserved to bring the outside in. Adding in rocks and stones, wood, driftwood, bark, ferns and flowers, leaves and sticks; moss in all shapes and forms. From pillow moss to fern moss to lichen moss- we have created a 3D piece of art for your space.”




Mary Anne Donovan (BFA in Painting and Art Education – DAAP, U. of Cincinnati, MFA in Painting and Sculpture-University of Montana) has exhibited in a wide variety of venues in regional, national and several international exhibits. Over several decades, she has explored oil, acrylic, mixed media, sculpted surfaces and a number of experiments with constructed surfaces. She taught for the Montana Arts Council, The Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati Art Museum, The Taft Museum, The Art Academy of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky University, with courses and workshops for students ranging from children to graduate art students. For 21 years, she was a Lead Teacher/Art Specialist in the Cincinnati Public Schools, earning special recognition by the Ohio Art Education Association as Outstanding Art Teacher for Southwestern Ohio in 2007 and Ohio Elementary Art Teacher of 2016.

“Our world, the entire natural environment, provides an endless display of vivid color, light and dimension. The processes of growth and decay provide fascinating streams of knowledge and lessons for those who would observe and partake. Modern times, like ancient times, are much alike. People still seek beauty, ideals and order as we wrestle with devastating environmental events, plague, civil unrest and ultimately the need to feel connected.”




Westerville-based oil painter Janine Crum masterfully creates deeply introspective works emphasizing the emotional and physical landscape. Recently merging both her interests in mental health awareness and the stormy skies of the Midwest, she has been able to capture a wide range of emotions with her beautiful, expressive landscapes. As a result, she has given voice to both the beauty and power of an often overlooked phenomenon, thunderstorms, while exploring the development and effects of hardship and hope. Janine’s work can be seen in various online and print capacities and has been featured in local and national juried exhibitions. She is also the recent recipient of Westerville’s Emerging Artist of the Year award, and co-founder of Daylight Artist Collective, a working studio space and gallery for artists in the heart of Uptown Westerville with the mission of positioning “art as a profession” as viable, accessible, and important to the growth of a community.

“I began painting storms during the pandemic as a way of processing the depths of what I was feeling. It was in storms that I felt safe, comfortable, and free to feel everything I didn’t have words for.”




Kat Rakel-Ferguson As a recently retired art educator, Kat Rakel-Ferguson is anxious to have the opportunity to rediscover her own artistic endeavors. Typically, her work has dealt with personal and social issues using photographic processes and mixed media. However, after 30+ years of teaching and the regimental aspects of that profession, she refuses to limit her means of self-expression. Her approach to life has always been a combination of spontaneity and planning. Kat’s artwork reflects those characteristics as well.

“Nature changes from moment to moment – hot to cold, mild to stormy, peaceful to threatening – constant flux. My relationship to nature is just as “consistently inconsistent.” When my husband and I bought our house (on a very busy city street), our backyard was our escape. Aside from one lonely pear tree, the yard was an empty space. So, we built a pond, planted many trees and created our own oasis. It has been a place of comfort and joy. ‘Magical’ as some friends have described it. These images express some of the moments experienced in this place of refuge.”



Multiple pieces in this exhibition are for sale. If you are interested in purchasing any artwork from the show, please contact us at