Broncho drummer Nathan Price finds visual expression in A One Man Show

click to enlarge Broncho drummer Nathan Price finds visual expression in A One Man Show
Copyright 2016 Nathan Price. All rights reserved.

It is not unusual for longtime artists of one medium to want to try another. Yet for Nathan Price, the drummer of Norman-based indie pop-rock band Broncho, music and painting have always been a constant. From an early age, he saw his father, Brad Price, painting, in addition to his whole family who, according to Price, “did music.”

“In my personal life, in my head, they’re both quite equal,” Price said about music and visual art. “I hear just as many songs in my head as I see paintings.”

The paintings that Price sees will be on canvas for the public in A One Man Show, opening 6-9 p.m. Jan. 13 at The Depot Gallery, 200 S. Jones Ave., in Norman as part of the 2nd Friday Norman Art Walk event.

Because of Price’s touring schedule, he doesn’t get much time to paint. If he gets a week off, he will paint as much as possible at his Tulsa home before going back on the road. While he cannot paint on tour, he finds other aspects of visual art that he can do.

“Visual art is more of an emotional, therapeutic activity where I’m usually alone,” Price said. “I’m an introvert, so it’s quite helpful. With music, it’s more of a social job where I’m having to meet people and hang out with people all night, collaborating. …  I don’t get to choose; the music chooses for me. The business chooses for me. Whenever I’m not on tour, I paint. When I’m on tour, I can’t. I’ll fill in the blank with graphic design, sketching and computer work.”

Price said that he doesn’t adhere to a specific style. Instead, his mood determines the style. Some days, he might paint like the paintings of the Santa Fe School he saw on trips to the Southwest with his family as a child. On other days, influences from artists he discovered in high school, such as Dali and Picasso, might inspire him. Price’s more recent works before booking A One Man Show were more abstract due to drastic life changes.

“I got a divorce, and I went through a more abstract, losing my mind sort of direction,” Price said. “I booked this show and thought I should make some pretty stuff people would want to buy. I put a few personal things on hold and started painting the things I enjoy that are a little less exposing, personally.”

While Price struggles with finding time to paint, he finds ways to blend his two worlds of music and art. For years, he was the cover designer for Fowler Volkswagen’s annual Blackwatch Christmas album. Yet he resisted designing Broncho band art for years until this year, when he designed the cover of its 2016 Double Vanity release.

Price’s work has previously shown in Norman, where it was displayed in the Generations exhibit alongside his father and grandfather’s art. Outside Norman, he has exhibited in Tulsa and Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he is represented by Art Exchange Gallery. Price is also interested in branching out into children’s book illustrations in the near future.

When asked why people should come see his work, Price emphasized both emotion and his lack of a formal art education.

“My art is natural — I don’t have an education for art,” Price said. “I’m technically an amateur. I do it for the love. I think in my artwork, what I see through doing it, is a highly honest and emotional type of art.”

Price’s show continues through Feb. 26. Additional events tied to the exhibit include an art chat with Price 2 p.m. Jan. 22 and a second reception 6 p.m. Feb. 10.


Print headline: Beyond Broncho, Broncho drummer Nathan Price shows his visual side with a new art exhibit in Norman.

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