New Olympian-inspired art exhibit opens in Lake Placid

Published: Oct. 16, 2023 at 4:39 PM EDT
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LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (WCAX) - A new art installation has opened up in the Olympic Center in Lake Placid that showcases an array of original paintings that capture the Olympic spirit.

Lisa Carter of the Olympic Regional Development Authority or ORDA says they are in the process of alternating the pieces between sports venues across the village.

“Now we are trying to get it moved across different venues best we can just to have as many people to see this art as possible,” Carter said.

The Olympian-inspired art exhibit is a collaborative project between ORDA, the Al Oerter Foundation or AOF and Art of the Olympians, which is affiliated with AOF.

“They are good at everything they attempt to do and this inspires people to go beyond what they think that they can do,” said Cathy Oerter, the chair of the Al Oerter Foundation.

Cathy Oerter was the wife of former discus Olympian and artist Al Oerter who died in 2007.

She says the exhibit gives her husband and other athletes’ paintings a new home, one that is fittingly in the town of Olympic champions.

In addition to Oerter, another Olympian featured is Roald Bradstock, a former javelin Olympian who competed for the United Kingdom. He says one of his pieces on display was inspired by his visit to Lake Placid.

“Just to be in the Olympic Center and to see the venues and especially where Miracle on Ice happened, I was a high school senior at that time, and to me I just felt compelled and inspired to create a new piece,” Bradstock said.

Pieces that are unique and capture the physical energy athletes exude on canvas.

“Al never... he was too far away to see where his discus landed, so he said it had to be full of energy and power and that is what he was trying to capture that explosion of color and the energy behind it when a discus hits the ground,” Oerter said.

For Bradstock, he says repetition is how he captures the energy.

“That’s what we do as athletes is repeat movements and to get stronger and more flexible and more skilled at our craft,” he said.

Jaime Collins, who is also with ORDA, says it’s these different methods of expression that showcase a different side of the athletes.

“They have a completely other side of them, this creative side they want to get out too, you know, and that they do it so astoundingly well, I think, is inspiring,” Collins said.

Visitors can find the main gallery on the second floor of the Olympic Center. Carter says they will be watching to see how it is received before potentially considering a more permanent home for Olympian art.