Biography: Donald C. Aggerbeck
I was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1952, and grew up in the Chicago suburbs. I followed my two older brothers in many things including attending St. Olaf College.
I did not major in art at St. Olaf. I majored in philosophy and psychology. It was not until the last semester of my graduation year, 1974, that I took my first formal art class either as a high school or college student. I was always interested in creative expression while growing up. I often made drawings or “doodles,” most often while during a class that did not hold my attention or when I should have been studying. That first art class at St. Olaf hooked me and made me realize that nothing else could satisfy my mind, heart or soul.
After graduating, I decided to continue art classes. I attended the University of Chicago as a graduate student at-large, studying drawing, painting and sculpture. In 1975 I moved to Minneapolis to attend the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. I began taking night classes and later entered the college as a full-time day student. While there, I studied painting with Birney Quick and attended his Grand Marais Art Colony in the summer of 1976. I have always had a love of nature and landscape painting has always been a favorite of mine. The summer in Grand Marais gave focus to my art. For the next decade or so, I concentrated on landscapes and cityscapes. I worked at a variety of jobs either in art supply stores or galleries to “pay the bills” while I tried to be an “artist.” During that time I met Mike Lynch, a Minneapolis artist who taught me invaluable lessons about drawing and painting, particularly watercolor.
In 1983, Randi Johnson, another 1974 St. Olaf graduate, and her husband Mark, allowed me to use their log cabin so that I could paint full-time and not worry about “paying the bills.” This was an extremely beneficial year of concentrated effort.
In the years following, I exhibited art in numerous juried competitions and received some awards. I had some solo exhibitions at art or community centers and college galleries. I did some freelance artwork and illustration. I was a member, exhibition chairman and president of the Minnesota Artists Association and a member of the Twin Cities Watercolor Society. I became somewhat accomplished with the landscapes and cityscapes I was drawing and painting, but I was increasingly wanting to do something more than create a pretty picture. About that time I met Jack Youngquist, a retired Moorhead State University drawing instructor who helped push me in new directions and expand my artistic expression.
In 1989 I met my artistic, intellectual and spiritual soulmate, Jane Pederson, while we were both working at an art gallery and publisher. Jane attended Moorhead State University and graduated in Fine Arts from University of Iowa. Like Jack, Jane helped me explore new techniques and avenues of expression. Collage, both traditional cut and paste and digital, are a primary technique currently employed in my art. Jane and I work independently, but also collaborate on artwork using the pseudonym, pederbeck Arte gruppe.
Our art can be viewed on our website: www.pederbeck.com A selection of images are sold wholesale through Midwest Art and Frame. The public can purchase art online through Tangletown Art, Imagekind or Fine Art America.
We live in Northeast Minneapolis and enjoy being part of the vibrant Northeast Minneapolis Art Association.