Herb Roe was born and spent his childhood in the Appalachian regions of Southern Ohio and Northeastern Kentucky. In 1992 he received a scholarship to the Columbus College of Art and Design in Columbus, Ohio and attended his freshman year there. In the summer of 1993 he met the Louisiana mural artist Robert Dafford. He subsequently apprenticed to and worked for Dafford for 15 years on mural projects throughout the Ohio and Mississippi River Valleys. As a Dafford Muralist, Roe specialized in large scale, long term historical mural projects, often connected with local Chambers of Commerce, Tourism Bureaus and Downtown Development Agencies. Many of these projects took between 5 and 10 years to complete, and ranged from 1 to 50 murals in each town. In 2007 Roe began to pursue a career as a fine artist, specializing in oil paintings depicting the history and culture of his adopted home in South Louisiana’s Acadiana region. His most recent series of works explores his childhood home in Appalachian eastern Kentucky and southern Ohio and adulthood traveling and working in the southern US.
Who makes up your art circle?
I have a glorious assortment of reprobates, weirdos, and dreamers I’ve collected over the years. Some I’ve known for 20 or 30 years, like other former Dafford Muralists Brett Chigoy and Chris Pavlik, and Robert himself. Others are more recent denizens of the Warehouse on Garfield Artist Studios where I’ve had my shop for 20 years. More are scattered around the country, like the artist co-ops that I’m part of in Baton Rouge and NOLA, the Baton Rouge Gallery and the Renegade Artist Collective. Painters, poets, musicians, sculptors, curators, dancers, and designers, I’m an equal opportunity collector of beautiful weirdos.
How do you expand your art circle?
I like to go to shows, meet artists whose work I like. I also like to participate in group shows, some juried, some as part of the co-ops I’ve joined. I try to enter at least one a year, which gives me a chance to meet other artists from around the state, country and even the world in the case of some international shows.
What value do you see in having a creative community?
I like to see what other artists are doing. I love to see them try new things and explore new avenues of expression, hone their skills, and refine their work. I also personally love having people I can bounce ideas off of, show potentially new directions for my own work, etc.
How does your artistic approach contribute to your community?
I hope I inspire other artists to try new things, experiment with new themes or techniques. I try to take the time to offer advice and opinions when asked, to encourage them and push them to hone their skills.
Our weekly Art Circle series profiles artists throughout the community and is sponsored in part by Lafayette Visitor Enterprise Fund managed by Lafayette Travel