DEL MAR–Veteran Winston School visual and digital arts teacher Dan Peragine was selected as one of 23 regional artists to participate in the San Diego Botanic Garden’s fifth “Sculpture in the Garden” exhibit.
The exhibit, which runs through April 15, 2013, features sculptural creations placed throughout the garden’s 37-acre setting against a backdrop of dragon trees, rare fruit gardens, and bamboo groves.
Peragine’s sculpture titled “Transpersonal” is 8’ x 8’ x 4’ and is a five-piece composition of negative and positive aspects depicting the human form with the opposing forms creating complete figures. Peragine said his use of color in the sculpture reflects different emotional states and stems from his late mentor Constantine Cherkas’ color theories. In addition to Cherkas, who gave Peragine his approval of the work, Peragine said he was influenced by the work of sculptor Anne Truitt and further inspired by ideas in transpersonal psychology and his affinity for early Russian Constructivism.
For 24 years, Peragine has taught visual and digital arts at The Winston School, a college preparatory program for bright, creative students in grades 4 through 12, who have struggled to meet their potential. He also is a founding instructor in the school’s summer arts program focused on developing student creativity in visual arts, drama, digital arts or music. During the three-week program, students produce a finished product and integrate their work with artists in other media such as a concert, a performance, or a film premiere.
Four of Peragine’s Winston School art students Nikolai Spiegelberg, Daniel Smith, Zachary O’Brien and Tim Higgins assisted in the installation last month.
The Winston School’s Headmaster Mike Peterson said Peragine has been an influential creative force at the school.
“We are very proud of Dan. He helped build The Winston School’s art program into one of the best student programs in San Diego and we are fortunate to have daily exposure to his work and talent. In addition to being a tremendously valuable and respected teacher, he is an award-winning sculptor and painter who is a dynamic force in the local art community. The exhibit is a terrific way to expand his audience and share what we have come to value very much at our school.”
The sculpture is a progression of his earlier public works commissioned by the Nebraska’s Department of Economic Development for the Omaha Information Center on the I-80. The sculpture is a 10-foot-tall abstract piece titled “Praxis” constructed in one-half inch plate steel. The installation is part of Nebraska’s 500-mile Sculpture Garden and is also one of four works in the National Registry of America’s Public Art at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC.
Peragine earned his master’s in fine arts and teaching at the University of Nebraska. He received several public art commissions through private and public funding sources and served on the Mayor of Lincoln, Nebraska’s blue ribbon panel to establish a budget percentage for city arts program. While in Nebraska, he had a diverse range of career experiences from working for the Nebraska Department of Education on a children’s education ITV series title “Strawberry Square” to working as the arts and crafts director at the Nebraska State Penitentiary.
In 1989, Peragine relocated to Southern California to join The Winston School faculty and became a high-profile member of the San Diego arts community. In 2001, he was a member of the San Diego Museum of Art design/installation team and in 2005, the Del Mar Foundation commissioned him for “Payasada Horseplay,” one of 10 full-size cast horses commissioned to be painted by local artists. He currently serves as a juror for exhibitions and host of children’s arts shows for the Del Mar Arts Center. He has also exhibited at the Del Mar Art Center and the San Diego Maritime Museum and presented a solo exhibit at the Solana Beach City Hall Gallery.