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Published January 08, 2009, 12:00 AM

Hansen paintings Unison’s exhibit

January’s exhibit at Unison Bank is different in that the artist, Margaret Hansen, is no longer living and her paintings are on display but not for sale.

By: Toni Pirkl, The Jamestown Sun

January’s exhibit at Unison Bank is different in that the artist, Margaret Hansen, is no longer living and her paintings are on display but not for sale.

Hansen’s granddaughter, Carol Falck, suggested exhibiting the oil paintings as a way to honor her grandmother. Falck remembers her grandmother, who was born Dec. 1, 1908 and died Oct. 29, 1990, as fun loving and warm.

“I lost my mother last year and so we acquired a lot of my grandmother’s paintings,” she said. With them Falck had enough for an exhibit. “I just wanted people to see what she’d done.”

The artist began her painting hobby in 1977, when she was in her mid-70s and living at the Gardenette. Falck said her grandmother had no lessons. Instead, she picked up tips watching Prairie Public Television and then got busy with canvas, oils and brushes.

“She needed to express her artistic talents and painting became her venue,” Falck said.

Hansen’s first painting was of Gardenette Gardens. If she didn’t like what she’d done, Hansen would scrape the paint off and start over, Falck said. Before Hansen’s hobby ended, she had nearly 20 completed oil paintings, which she gave away.

“She only painted for family and friends,” Falck said.

Most of the paintings are landscapes, but there are some with people and animals in them. Hansen spent much of her life on a farm so many of the scenes depict some aspect of farm life.

When she moved to town from the farm east of Jamestown, Hansen went to work as a cook at the Anne Carlsen Center. She also sewed for people to earn extra income. Falck said her grandmother’s sewing was an expression of her artistic talents as well.

“In 1976, she won a sewing contest for the centennial,” Falck said. “She dressed a doll that is in the Stutsman County Museum.”

The exhibit of Hansen’s paintings is an opportunity to enjoy artwork that will return to the walls of her family and friends. They can be viewed in the lobby of Unison through the rest of January.

Sun reporter Toni Pirkl can be reached at (701) 952-8453 or by e-mail at tonip@jamestownsun.com

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