Call for Artists: RCAA’s 10th Annual Juried Exhibition

David Erickson, artist and professor emeritus of art at Indiana State University

Entry deadline: July 20

River City Art Association and host sponsor First Financial Bank invite Wabash Valley artists to enter RCAA’s 10th Annual Juried Exhibition to be featured in the bank’s main branch at Sixth Street and Wabash Avenue.

The exhibition opens during First Friday events on Aug. 3 in downtown Terre Haute. A reception is scheduled 6 to 8 p.m. in the bank lobby with an awards ceremony at 6:30. Artwork will remain on display for viewing during regular banking hours through Aug. 31. Winning artwork will be featured again in a September show in the bank’s Springhill branch.

The competition is open to Wabash Valley artists in Indiana and Illinois age 18 and older. Art must be entirely original, completed within the last three years, and not previously entered in a juried RCAA exhibition.

Juror David Erickson, professor emeritus of art at Indiana State University, will select winners in five categories as well as the Best of Show.

First-, second- and third-place and honorable mention prizes will be awarded in drawing (includes ink, pencil, pastel and printmaking), painting (includes watercolor, oil and acrylic), photography/digital art, ceramics/glass (includes shattered, fused and etched glass) and mixed media (includes wood, metal, fabric/thread and three-dimensional artwork).

People’s Choice and Artists’ Choice awards also will be determined by those attending the reception.

Entry forms and the Call for Entries prospectus will be available (soon) at The Golden Frame at 509 E. Voorhees St. in Terre Haute and on

Entry fees are $20 for RCAA and Wabash Valley Art Guild members, $30 for nonmembers and $15 for students (with valid student ID) for up to three entries per artist.

The nonrefundable fee (and copy of student ID) must accompany an entry form and either mailed to RCAA 10th Annual Exhibition, P.O. Box 3605, Terre Haute, IN 47803 or dropped off at The Golden Frame by July 20.

All two-dimensional artwork must be suitably framed and wired for hanging. Art with “sawtooth hangers” and “clip frames” will not be accepted. Gallery-wrapped canvas paintings or photographs will be accepted.

RCAA reserves the right to reject work that is not suitably framed or is not suitable subject matter for public display.

Entrants are to deliver their artwork between noon and 5 p.m. July 31 using the west entrance to the bank, and bring easels to display their work. Art/artist identification tags must be attached to the back or bottom of each piece.

Artists must pick up their work between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Aug. 31.

For more information contact Past President Todd Stokes at 812-232-0048 or

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RCAA co-founder Monty Jones and son Marty Jones featured artists at Gaslight Art Colony

Monty and Marty Jones at Gaslight Art Colony, Marshall, Illinois

Article by Gaslight Art Colony

Gaslight Art Colony in Marshall, Illinois, is pleased to present Monty Jones and Marty Jones for the June show! The June show opening is on Saturday, June 16th from 5:00-8:00 p.m. CDT.

This father and son pair paint and photograph their passions. Monty Jones had a deep interest in drawing and painting from a very early age and he actually subscribed to a mail-order art course in his younger days. He never quite completed the course due to growing family commitments and working twelve hour days in the printing industry. So his artistic desires were put on hold until retirement at age sixty.

Monty was one of seven original founders of River City Art Association about nine years ago [fall of 2008] has been very involved in all their activities over the years. This has led to being involved in Gaslight and several other art organizations in this area

“Outfoxing the Hounds” by Monty Jones

Monty likes to draw and paint all things that he may be passionate about, which includes a lot of subjects. He is probably best known for his wildlife art, but due to involvement in auto racing and automotive interests he really loves to draw and paint cars. Monty has been in several exhibitions and art shows up and down the Wabash Valley and Indianapolis area.

Monty joined Indiana Wildlife Artists in 2011 and has won several first and second place awards in that time. Monty has also been a member of Covered Bridge Art Association for several years [associate member].

He works out of a studio behind his home in Terre Haute, and has been married to his wife, Phyllis, for over fifty years. They have three adult children, Marty, Robert, and Barbara.

Owl by Marty Jones

Marty is a 53 year old photographer living near Terre Haute, Indiana. “My father, Monty “Indiana” Jones, has always been the real artist in the family!” By studying his paintings at an early age, Marty became interested in art and photography. To this day he likes to study famous paintings to be inspired, gain ideas, and improve photography skills. He has been taking photos since his parents gave him his first Kodak camera at age eight.

Marty’s occupation is working as a Regulatory and Safety Consultant in the Electric Utility Industry. He learned to operate a camera through practice or trial and error. Today, he continues to learn photography and software by watching some of the widely available video tutorials and blogs. During the day Marty photographs nature and wildlife. In the blue hour and afterwards he likes to photograph by light painting street scenes, abandoned buildings, and old cars.

Many of the photos subjects he will have on display at the Gaslight Art Colony are of birds. There have been times he have sat in a blind all day to photograph a single bird. To date, he has photographed 334 different bird species within the state of Indiana. Many of the birds photographed are extremely rare for our area. He likes photography that challenging and obtaining bird photography perfection meets that challenge.

Photographing birds opened a lot of doors for him. For example, Marty met his wife Stephanie thanks to a photo he once took of a Blue Grosbeak. It also has allowed him to develop many connections and friendships with birders and bird photographers from around the world. Marty also very involved with our local and national land trusts. He does everything he can to help protect our native birds and the habitats they depend upon to survive. His ultimate bird photography goal is to encourage the viewer to become more aware of what is often so easily overlooked and under-appreciated.

Many of his bird photographs have been printed and distributed in state, national and international publications. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the United States Fish & Wildlife Service, The Philadelphia Zoo, Indiana Department of Natural Resources, and many different Land Trusts use his photos for advertising and educational purposes. Marty has always donated bird photos to any non-profit organization that uses photos for the good of our native birds.

Be sure to register for a chance to win a free children’s class at the opening reception. An adult may register for a child’s class to be given away in the form of a drawing. A coupon to the supper club is also given to everyone who comes to the opening.

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Dian Der Ohanian Phillips is June Artist of the Month at Vigo County Public Library

Dian Der Ohanian Phillips with her photography exhibit at Vigo County Public Library – June 2018

River City Art Association member Dian Der Ohanian Phillips of Terre Haute will display her black and white photographic works throughout June in RCAA’s Artist of the Month gallery space at the Vigo County Public Library.

Day Lily by Dian Der Ohanian Phillips

The display includes “Day Lily,” which received First Place in the Photography category at RCAA’s Ninth Annual Juried Exhibition in August 2017.

Dian Der Ohanian Phillips has always been a visual artist. Growing up in New Albany, Indiana, she took every elective art class in middle and high school, and took Saturday morning art classes at the University of Louisville. Also during that time (and long before online courses), she began correspondence course work with Art Instruction Schools. That foundation course in drawing, painting and commercial art gave her the skills to be hired in an art department immediately after high school graduation.
A scholarship student at Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, Dian received a B.F.A. in
visual communications. Her foundation courses included fine art and photography (where
she learned darkroom skills). She completed a masters program at Indiana University,
and did additional post-graduate work at Boston University. While at Herron, she studied
painting with professors Harry A. Davis, Edmund Brucker, Robert Berkshire and Sarah Burns.
Dian was a graphic designer/art director for the majority of her professional life. Her
career began when layouts were created on a drawing board using the tools of the trade:
x-acto knives, rubber cement, ruling pens and acetate overlays. Twenty years later, she
transitioned from drawing board to Macintosh computers. Her photography also
transitioned from film/darkrooms to digital cameras. She continued her fine art pursuits
during those years by taking drawing and painting classes. After retiring, she began
painting again full-time and has participated in several group and solo exhibitions in
Indiana and Illinois.
Dian works primarily in watercolor, acrylic and mixed media. Her paintings and her black
and white photos are strongly influenced by nature and rural scenes. Her art is in private
collections throughout the United States.

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RCAA’s Brady, Stokes place at Olney Arts Council Fine Art Showcase

Congratulations to River City Art Association co-founding member Ruthann Brady and vice president Todd Stokes on their honors received at the 13th annual Olney Arts Council Fine Art Showcase April 10-13 in The Holiday at Olney, Illinois.

Ruthann received a first place in mixed media for an encaustic painting.
Todd was awarded second place in 3D for “Fleeting Time, Faded Memories,” etched glass with photograph.

For more information on the OAC and its Fine Arts Showcase, visit the OAC website.

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Works by RCAA members in Arts Illiana Juried Art Exhibition

WAR-hol Pop Artist by Neil Garrison

Artwork by River City Art Association members Neil Garrison, Debbie Goodin, Todd Stokes and Sheila K. Ter Meer was recently selected for the 2018 Juried Art Exhibition at Arts Illiana Gallery in Terre Haute.

Guest jurors Philip and Brenda Milliren of Terre Haute chose 58 pieces by 36 artists from Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Kentucky for the regional exhibition. All are on display through July 20.

Neil’s “WAR-hol Pop Artist” is an acrylic on canvas. A second piece, ink on illustration board, by Neil is titled “Marilyn Morel and Her Fun Guys.”

The jurors also chose two etched glass pieces by Todd Stokes, “Strata” and “Status Quo.”

“Shrouded Duet” by Debbie Goodin is a digital photo on aluminum. And “Party Girl” by Sheila Ter Meer is a glossy photography-based digital art abstraction.

A closing reception is set for 6 to 9 p.m. July 20 in the gallery at 23 N. Sixth St. in downtown Terre Haute.  Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

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RCAA members honored at Wabash Valley Art Guild Spring Art Show

“Comfortable Past” by David Gill, Best of Show at 2018 WVAG Spring Art Show

River City Art Association’s David Gill received Best of Show honors May 4 at the Wabash Valley Art Guild Annual Spring Art Show reception in Clabber Girl Bake Shop and Museum in Terre Haute. David’s “Comfortable Past” entry in the Painting category features his grandfather.

Juror Jason Krueger, curator for Indiana State University’s permanent art collection, also gave First Place in Painting to David for his entry, “Last Perfect Day.”

“Last Perfect Day” by David Gill, 1st Place, 2018 Wabash Valley Art Guild Spring Show

Seven other awards went to RCAA members Ruthann Brady, First Place in Mixed Media, “Stand Tall”; Bruce Fiscus, First in 3-D, “Nid D’oiseau Colibri” (french for bird’s nest and hummingbird); Richard Acton, Second Place, Mixed Media, “Get Off My Limb”; Sheila K. Ter Meer, Second in Photography/Digital, “Middle Child Born on the Libra-Scorpio Cusp”; Todd Stokes, Second in 3-D, “Fleeting Time-Faded Memory” and Third in Photography, “Ephemeral Forest”; and JoAnne Perigo Fiscus, Honorable Mention in Mixed Media, “Sea-sation.”

These nine works of art will be displayed alongside nine other winning entries throughout May in The Gallery at Clabber Girl.


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J. Melanie Cloutier RCAA’s May artist of the month in Vigo library

Mount Baker-J. Melanie Cloutier

An oil painting titled “Mount Baker, Bellingham, WA” is among artwork by J. Melanie Cloutier to be featured in May in River City Art Association’s Artist of the Month gallery space at the Vigo County Public Library in Terre Haute. Her drawings and paintings can be viewed May 31.

Melanie’s artist’s statement:

I have been so fortunate to always have art as a big part of me. Many of my earliest memories have had to do with drawing and expressing myself in some arty sort of way.

I have always been delighted and inspired by the beauty of nature and much of my work reflects that theme. I suppose that doesn’t make it very edgy but it is relaxing and makes me feel good. While most of my work is realistic, often with an illustrative quality to it, usually there are also areas of abstraction or impressionism in application of paint and use of color.

I like using watercolor for florals, pastel for people and pet portraits, and oil and acrylics for landscapes. I love the discipline of figure drawing and pen and ink for quick sketches. Recently, I’ve been stitching like I paint, doing extremely detailed full surface embroidery of people and pets, where the eye blends the stitches of thread. It is similar to a painting using pointillism. I only use my own photos for references, never kits. The patience and skill that it requires is really quite challenging. Although I spend a lot of time and effort on layout and composition before I start applying media no piece is so precious that it keeps me from adapting and making changes as I go. I always challenge myself to create each project better than the one before, and I am often thinking of my next painting while working on the current one.

Painting for me is meditative. At the end of the process I have something positive and physical to show for my efforts. I rely heavily on my intuition and believe the only difference between the success or failure of most work is the amount of passion you put into it. I am frequently artistically inspired by my dreams both in subject matter and problem solving. Magic occurs during the motivation and execution of ideas. Sometimes happy accidents result from the shear manipulation of media and materials. I think it is important to take the time to really “see” then understand how that makes me “feel”. Capturing that feeling is the real art.

I am infinitely curious and amused how people chose to express themselves. Creativity is not unique to just a few – many of us have the potential to express ourselves in unusual and wondrous ways. Creating art is work, but it also must be fun! If it is not fun then I don’t want to do it. I don’t necessarily set out to create art— I just do my work and if it is true, I feel it will become art. Although I have acquired a great deal of professional knowledge over the years, I will remain a student eager to learn — just as I feel we are all teachers, full of awareness and personal experiences that should be shared with others.

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