Palestine Art Center will showcase the diverse talents of the River City Art Association February through March in its gallery at 110 S. Main St., Palestine, Illinois.
More than 30 works by 11 members of the Terre Haute-based art group may be viewed from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays.
Participating artists include Edith and Richard Acton, Della Bender, Mike Bender, Steve Harrold, Monty “Indiana” Jones, Dian D. Phillips, Jan Skipo, Todd Stokes, Sheila K. Ter Meer and Spencer Young.
Mediums include fused glass; pottery; pen and ink, and graphite drawings; oil, acrylic and watercolor paintings; glass etching; mixed media, three-dimensional; abstract and traditional photography.
Edith Acton has designed countless fused glass wall hangings, each one-of-a-kind due to the process used to reinvent the colored glass into art. Her wall hangings have received awards in RCAA’s Annual Juried Exhibition as well as the Wabash Valley Art Guild’s Annual Spring Art Exhibition in Terre Haute. More of her wall hangings as well as jewelry are featured on the Rivers & Roads Artisan Trail website at riversandroadstrail.com.
Richard Acton majored in industrial arts education in college which led to an interest in building and repairing things in wood using a variety of carpentry tools. Two years ago he pursued a more creative outlet requiring only his hands and a few basic potter’s tools. After taking classes at John C. Campbell Folk School in North Carolina and at Indiana State University, working with clay became his medium of choice.
Della Bender learned to express herself artistically through plein air instruction from retired Indiana State art professor Evelyn Gertrude James. After three years with James, Della soon was doing commission paintings, receiving accolades, and exhibiting at banks in Brazil, Indiana. Her love of nature and wildlife are evident in her oil landscapes. She went on to teach art at the Glenn Civic Center in East Glenn.
Mike Bender, a Brazil, Indiana native, began exhibiting his pen and ink drawings professionally in 2013 and has since won several awards and accolades. One of his drawings, “River of Time,” was chosen for the cover of the January-March 2013 issue of Arts Illiana’s Spectrum magazine highlighting the 2013 Year of the River celebration in Terre Haute. He later received a Merit Award at the Swope Art Museum 69th Annual Wabash Valley Juried Exhibition.
Steve Harrold is a sporting dog artist. He has a master’s degree in art and serves on the planning committee for the new German Shorthair wing at the National Bird Dog Museum in Grand Junction, TN. He also has paintings hanging in the museum. He has been involved with sporting dogs, mostly bird dogs since he was 10 years old. He has field trialed German Shorthairs since about 1980 and is fortunate to have a dog in both the GSPCA and NGSPA Hall of Fame.
Monty Jones, an RCAA founding member, has a studio in Terre Haute, where he paints wildlife, automobilia and landscapes in acrylic. He also works with colored pencil and practices pyrography (pokerwork or woodburning). He recently was commissioned to create “Big Mouth,” an acrylic on Masonite, to be used by Bass Unlimited West Central Indiana as a poster for a fundraiser in early 2016.
Dian D. Phillips studied painting with professors Harry A. Davis, Edmund Brucker, Robert Berkshire and Sarah Burns at Herron School of Art in Indianapolis. She was a graphic designer/art director for the majority of her professional life. She works primarily in watercolor, acrylic and oil, and creates images that are strongly influenced by nature and rural scenes. Her paintings are in private collections throughout the United States.
Jan Skipo lived 20 years in Indianapolis, working in marketing for Kondas Photographers and for Wyant Photography, assisting at weddings. She also belonged to Photo Venture in Indianapolis, a weekly photo club that focuses on learning and a hands-on approach. Jan now works as a nurse in Terre Haute, and is a strong supporter of the arts community. In 2014, Jan was one of the top winners in the “Aging in the Wabash Valley” photography competition sponsored by Indiana State University and Arts Illiana Inc.
Todd Stokes not only finds an expressive outlet with photography, he also enjoys creating interesting two- and three-dimensional etched glass art incorporating basic geometric shapes as key elements in his designs. Working with glass is an extension of his experience in Plexiglas with a constructionist twist as he continues to explore three-dimensional works combining hand-cut glass with unique etched design work. He currently has work on display in The Crow Show in Arts Illiana as well as in The Golden Frame where he is manager and resident artist. He also is a member of the artist collective Watermark in Terre Haute.
Sheila K. Ter Meer has a penchant for whimsies – anything playful or fanciful, as an artistic creation. Through photo manipulation she creates abstract art from her traditional images. In 2014, Ter Meer’s portrait of her mother was chosen Overall Winner in Indiana State University’s “Aging in the Wabash Valley” photography competition. One of her wildlife images was featured in the Nature Conservancy of Indiana’s “Indiana, Naturally” photography exhibit at the Indianapolis International Airport. And Best of Show was awarded to her 3-D photo art entry in the 2014 Covered Bridge Art Association Associate Members Exhibition.
Spencer Young holds a bachelor’s degree in astronomy from Northwestern University and a master of science from Iowa State University. For several years he was an assistant photographer and darkroom operator for a portrait and wedding studio. Young is a landscape photographer however, capturing solar eclipses is high on his list of priorities. CAD, or computer assisted drawing is his third interest.
RCAA was established in 2008 by founding members Debbie Martinez and her late husband Marty, Monty “Indiana” Jones, Ruthann Brady, Adrianus Fraza, Kit Fisher, and the late Rob Robbins. Membership is open to Wabash Valley artists in Indiana and Illinois.
A member’s work is spotlighted each month in RCAA’s Artist of the Month Gallery in the Vigo County Public Library in Terre Haute and in its AOTM Gallery in Harrison College.
In February, Don Turner is featured in the library; and Monty Jones, at Harrison.
In March, Turner’s library exhibit will move to the RCAA gallery in Harrison; and crafts by Deanna Swearingen will be featured in the library display cases.
The art group meets at 6 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month in the Vigo County Public Library at Seventh and Poplar streets. For more information call vice president Todd Stokes at 812-232-0048.
For more information on Palestine Art Center exhibits call 618-586-2500 or visit mainstreetpalestine.com/artcenter.