Lightning Strikes Art!

Alert!  Alert!  Lightning has struck in the world of art and science!

Lightning on the Cheyenne Ridge
Roger Edwards, Photograph

The question:  Does art enhance science and math…and vice versa?

The answer:  Yes!   There are correlations between a Rembrandt portrait and a mathematical model…between Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night and a gamma-ray telescope.

Art enhances our understanding of science, particularly the science of weather.  We respond in new ways to Earth’s atmosphere and climate through the window of art.

Proof of this was shouted from the roof-tops, or rather from a towering glass atrium, as a cyclone of artworks from around the globe converged upon a mega art exhibition…the first National Weather Center Biennale in Norman, Oklahoma!

Flooded Car Lot
Tom Berenz, Oil on panel

The NWC Biennale was the brain child of three very accomplished whirlwinds in the professional art world and one top-notch scientist.

Alan Atkinson, Ph.D., Curator, The National Weather Center Biennale
Ghislain d’Humieres, Director, Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art
Erinn Gavaghan, Executive Director, Norman Arts Council
Dr. Berrien Moore III, Director, National Weather Center

Trouble Cometh
Kirby Kendrick, Acrylic on canvas

The challenge to artists was to create a work expressing the dynamic image of weather and its impact on the human experience.

The challenge was met!

Watch America’s most famous cyclone!
Click here if unable to view the video.

Leave a Comment



  1. Roger Edwards May 1, 2013 at 2:11 am - Reply


    Thanks very much, both for the visual shout-out and for promoting the NWC Biennale as a whole. Your list of exhibitions and museums is very impressive–including the familiar ones from my home city of Dallas–and your biographical discovery of painting amidst victory over cancer is inspirational. Keep the great art coming…and God bless!

    ===== Roger =====

  2. Martha Newport May 1, 2013 at 11:20 am - Reply

    Dear Kirby,
    I love your showing the connection between art and math/science. It is there, definitely, and such fun to see. Art and math do connect so many dots in our world.

    Martha Newport Shimkus

  3. Ken Gary May 1, 2013 at 11:34 am - Reply

    Hi Kirby. Loved your “Trouble Cometh.” Reminds me of the show on KPBS last night on the Dust Bowl.

  4. Margo May 1, 2013 at 2:38 pm - Reply

    Yours is by far the most interesting & beautiful of the 3! Really! I so enjoyed watching the short clip of the Wizard of Oz. Guess I’m still just a little girl. . . .

  5. Bob Bright May 1, 2013 at 3:01 pm - Reply

    Kirby, I was proud to be with you and Bob at the National Weather Center Biennale and your entry, Trouble Cometh, was in my and all of our friends’ opinion, Best In Show! By the way, PBS just re-ran Ken Burns’ Dust Bowl series. Your painting does that awful time justice.


  6. Richard Lief May 1, 2013 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    Trouble Cometh is marvelous! – Richard Lief

  7. linda blair May 1, 2013 at 4:47 pm - Reply

    Kirby, your entry in that fine, fine exhibition had to have far greater emotional impact than the others — again proving that expressive art can grant far greater insight and emotional punch…

  8. Alice Lowe May 2, 2013 at 10:01 am - Reply

    Kirby – What a great theme – weather has been an inspiration for artists of all kinds, writers and composers as well as visual artists. I love “Trouble Cometh” – your palette is exquisite! Alice

  9. Roxene Sloate May 2, 2013 at 11:44 am - Reply

    Love your new painting! The color says it all soooo well! Bravo Kirby!

  10. Roxene Sloate May 2, 2013 at 11:46 am - Reply

    I love your new painting! The color says it all so well! Bravo, Kirby!!

  11. Gigi Woodward May 2, 2013 at 11:52 pm - Reply

    Once again your blog is wonderful, showing us art in everything. I really am inspired by your painting. It takes the viewer to the emotion of a crushing time in our history and brings us back to the beauty of truth in art. Love the video. It really is the most famous cyclone. You are so clever!

Leave A Comment