Columbia couple display individual art styles with 'Perfect Pair' exhibit

Friday, March 8, 2013 | 6:00 a.m. CST; updated 10:58 p.m. CST, Friday, March 8, 2013
Local artists Jerry and Joanne Berneche pose for a portrait in front of their artwork at the Boone County Museum and Galleries on Tuesday afternoon.

COLUMBIA — Joanne likes to experiment with a variety of mediums, from watercolors to papier-mâche and often creates collages.

Jerry has a more traditional approach, frequently working with watercolors to create large landscapes and pen and ink to create portraits.

About the exhibit

The exhibit, "A Perfect Pair," will run through April 28 at the Boone County Historical Society. A reception for the artists will be at 5:30 p.m. March 21. The reception is free and open to the public; there will be an opportunity to talk with the artists, as well as purchase some of their work.

See the Boone County Museum and Galleries website for visiting hours and admission price.

Joanne and Jerry Berneche, who met as art students in college and have been married for 55 years, are displaying a retrospective of their artwork at the Boone County Museum and Galleries. "A Perfect Pair" opened Thursday in the Montminy Art Gallery and runs through April 28.

About 100 pieces are displayed, providing a comprehensive look into the couple’s individual styles and how they complement each other. Both artists work in a variety of mediums, but their styles are almost opposite.

Jennifer Flink, executive director and curator of the Boone County Museum and Galleries, said Joanne Berneche does a lot of work with quilts and patterns and has a vibrant collage style.

“I like to work in mixed mediums — I’m not a purist,” Joanne Berneche said. “I just like having fun. It’s like putting pieces of a puzzle together.”

“Jerry has a very romantic view,” Flink said. “His attention to detail and fine illustrative work is remarkable.”

Jerry Berneche also likes to work with satirical subjects, primarily human comedy. One theme he has referenced multiple times in his work is the contrast of the fun and innocence of childhood with the unknown ominous realities the future could hold.

“People are people. They do very strange and interesting things. It’s a matter of just being human,” he said.

The couple met at Ohio University in Athens in the late 1950s when both were studying art.

“We got together and stayed together. And we actually still like each other,” Jerry Berneche said with a laugh.

Both have extensive art education careers. Joanne Berneche taught at Central Methodist University, William Woods University and Columbia Public Schools; Jerry Berneche taught watercolor and drawing at the University of Missouri for 42 years.

Both have been members of the Columbia Art League for decades, and Joanne Berneche was the president from 1979 to 1981.

“Columbia has a wealth of talented artists, and we’re very fortunate to have the opportunity to showcase this level of work and achievement,” Flink said. 


Supervising editor is John Schneller.

Like what you see here? Become a member.

Show Me the Errors (What's this?)

Report corrections or additions here. Leave comments below here.

You must be logged in to participate in the Show Me the Errors contest.


Leave a comment

Speak up and join the conversation! Make sure to follow the guidelines outlined below and register with our site. You must be logged in to comment. (Our full comment policy is here.)

  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Don't use language that makes personal attacks on fellow commenters or discriminates based on race, religion, gender or ethnicity.
  • Use your real first and last name when registering on the website. It will be published with every comment. (Read why we ask for that here.)
  • Don’t solicit or promote businesses.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report comment" link.

You must be logged in to comment.

Forget your password?

Don't have an account? Register here.