Airman’s Korea photos on exhibit in Carson City |

Airman’s Korea photos on exhibit in Carson City

Nevada Appeal staff report
"Hard Rain's Gonna Fall" is a painting by Gig Depio, whose work is on display in the Community Center’s Sierra Room in Carson City through Feb. 28.

The Capital City Arts Initiative presents its exhibition Korea ’76 with work by artists Eugene Rolfe and Gig Depio in the Community Center’s Sierra Room, 851 E. William St., Carson City. The exhibition is available to the public through Feb. 28. Note: The Sierra Room is closed for renovation from Jan. 18 to Feb. 6.

Rolfe took his photographs in the mid-1970s while serving in the U.S. Air Force as a means of recording images of rural life in South Korea. After discovering that Rolfe had stored these vintage photographs in his garage attic, Depio worked to restore the negatives and print them. The images reflect both artists’ interest in the interweaving of Asian and American cultures and America’s strong impact on the social, political and economic life of other countries. Note that in the 1976 images where some Koreans are in traditional dress and some are in American attire. Depio responded to Rolfe’s photographic images with a series of new paintings that point to these small moments of history that are not widely known. This is the first exhibition of this collaborative work.

Rolfe, who has a minor in anthropology and a major in human relations from Florida State University, has always been interested in the diversity of people and their cultural history. He pursued photography in the mid-1970s as a means of recording images of rural life in South Korea. Rolfe was a military officer in the U.S. Air Force for 25 years from 1960 through 1985, and was assigned to Osan Air Force Base in the Republic of Korea in 1976. He worked for the Social Actions Office as a Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Program Director and received the L. Joseph Brown Award for the best Social Actions Program in the U.S Air Force. Rolfe worked for the State of Nevada’s Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Abuse, Mental Health and Substance Abuse Program from 1988 to 2007. He lives in Las Vegas with his family.

Depio is a painter and an advocate for public art in Las Vegas. He was awarded the 2016 Fellowship Grant in Painting by the Nevada Arts Council. He has worked on various exhibitions and projects with the Nevada Museum of Art, Nevada Arts Council’s OXS Gallery, and UNLV Marjorie Barrick Museum, among others. Depio graduated from Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. Depio’s Americana with Cadmium Orange exhibition is in CCAI’s Courthouse Gallery through Jan. 31. He lives in Las Vegas with his family.

The Sierra Room is open to the public during Carson City official meetings including the first/third Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and many afternoons from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday. For Sierra Room access, call 775-283-7421 or check meeting schedules online at

The Capital City Arts Initiative is an artist-centered organization committed to the encouragement and support of artists and the arts and culture of Carson City and the surrounding region. The Initiative is committed to community building for the area’s diverse adult and youth populations through art projects and exhibitions, live events, arts education programs, artist residencies and online projects.

CCAI is funded in part by the John Ben Snow Memorial Trust, Nevada Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts, John and Grace Nauman Foundation, Carson City Cultural Commission, Nevada Humanities and National Endowment for the Humanities, U.S. Bank Foundation.

For information, visit CCAI’s website at