RCAA’s Donald Turner celebrates Black History Month with library exhibit

Charcoal drawing of Harriet Tubman by Donald Turner

River City Art Association’s Donald Turner is the February Artist of the Month at the Vigo County Public Library in Terre Haute.

Each year the Terre Haute artist celebrates Black History Month with his exhibit. On display throughout February are his six portraits of African-American women, past and present, he chose to recognize for their significant contributions to black history and black culture.

Turner’s tribute wall of charcoal drawings includes Sojourner Truth, Rosa Parks, Madam C.J. Walker, Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey and Harriet Tubman featured here.

Don’s artistic skills emerged while attending McClean Junior and Garfield High schools, where he learned the fundamentals of art from Frida Terhorst and Jessie Martin.

After high school he attended Butler University and Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, where he studied with renowned Indiana artist Harry Davis.

Don later studied art with Charles Reddington, Whitney Engeran Jr., Monty Montgomery and Dick Hay at Indiana State University.

After earning several degrees in art education, a master of arts and a master of science degrees, Don studied watercolor painting in spring 2008 with internationally known painter Joseph Fettingis NWS at Turkey Run State Park.

Don is well known in Vigo County for his work in the community. After many years of teaching art in the public schools and at ISU, he retired in 2008 to start his own art business as an illustrator.

Don’s company, Turner Graphique Designs, has created work for several well-known companies in Terre Haute and the surrounding area including Clabber Girl, Williams/Randall Marketing and Communications, and Kiwanis Club of Terre Haute.

Don also is well known in the art community for the drawings and watercolor paintings he has created for area art shows. His many honors and awards include a Best of Show pastel drawing in the library’s Big Read Art Competition in 2017, and a first place pastel drawing in 2016 at RCAA’s eighth annual juried competition.

Turner is a past president and past vice president of RCAA. In addition to the art business, he also is active in the Vigo County Retired Teacher’s Association and Kiwanis Club of Terre Haute.

Contact Turner at Turner Graphique Designs, 2129 Spruce St., Terre Haute, IN 47807; or dtugraf007@aol.com.

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Artwork by Monty ‘Indiana’ Jones and Lynne Dunnavant on display in The Crow Show

The Old Crow Shooter by Monty “Indiana” Jones (Photo by Marty Jones)

River City Art Association’s co-founder Monty “Indiana” Jones of Terre Haute and Lynne Dunnavant of Parke County have artwork in The Crow Show 2020 that opened Feb. 7 in Arts Illiana Gallery in Terre Haute. Their work was selected by guest curator Arthur Short Bull whose works are on display in the north gallery at Arts Illiana during the run of the Crow Show.

Monty shares this backstory on his Facebook page: “Just as the swallows return to Capistrano, the crows return to Terre Haute to decorate our streets and sidewalks every winter. This is my accepted entry for the Arts Illiana Crow Show. As I worked on this piece I thought a lot about my long deceased uncle who used to like to rassle in the grass with all us kids {my brother, my cousins, and I} He liked to go out late at night to play cards, smoke, and shoot some Old Crow as he called that hard stuff in a shot glass. We lost him way to young to liver disease, so I guess the Old Crow came out the winner in the end. I dedicate this piece to my late and great uncle titled “The Old Crow Shooter.”

Oil painting of crows by Lynne Dunnavant

This oil painting by Lynne was selected for The Crow Show. She also shares this backstory on her Facebook page: “This was painted from a photo I took West of Hawthorn Park one evening leaving Christen and Steve’s house.”

A closing reception for The Crow Show is set for 6 to 9 p.m. April 17 in Arts Illiana Gallery at 23 N. Sixth St. in Terre Haute.

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RCAA artists honored at recent ‘small art’ show

Congratulations to River City Art Association members Elise Spaid-Roberts of Terre Haute and Lynne Dunnavant of Parke County for honors received at the recent closing reception for the ‘smallart’ show in Arts Illiana Gallery in Terre Haute.

“Storm Lights” by Elise Spaid-Roberts

Elise was awarded Best in Show 2D for her unique landscape titled “Storm Lights.” She used coins, acrylic and spray paint to create her entry. See more creative works by Elise in her Etsy shop.

Derelict Will Not Fall by Lynne Dunnavant

Lynne received the People’s Choice award for her “Derelict Will Not Fall.” She created the old barn with watercolors on paper. She also enjoys painting with oils. See more of Lynne’s work on her website Artwork by Lynne

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RCAA show during ‘The Drowsy Chaperone’ at Community Theatre of Terre Haute

Membership show during The Drowsy Chaperone in Community Theatre of Terre Haute

River City Art Association will have a membership show Jan. 31 through Feb. 9 in the Carolyn Toops Gallery at Community Theatre of Terre Haute.

CT patrons can view the art show before the musical “The Drowsy Chaperone” and during intermission.

Participating artists include Edith and Richard Acton, Bob DeFrance, Sandy Fisher, Valerie Funk, Monty “Indiana” Jones, Marcia Norman, Elise Spaid-Roberts, Todd Stokes, Sheila K. Ter Meer and Thomas Wright.

Performances begin at 8 p.m. Jan. 31, Feb. 1,  and Feb. 7 and 8 with matinees at 2:30 p.m. on Feb. 2 and Feb. 9.

CT is at 25th and Washington streets.

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RCAA’s Todd Stokes among artists in Link Art Gallery at Paris, Illinois Jan. 10-Feb. 7

Current Body of Work

“Between the Sheets” in the Link Art Gallery in Paris, Illinois features River City Art Association’s Todd Stokes of Terre Haute who has a studio in Dennison, Illinois. One of his glass etchings in the exhibit is titled “Current Body of Work.”

A reception with Stokes and three other glass artists is set for 2 to 4 p.m. CST Saturday, Feb. 1.

View works by Stokes, Erin Blitz, Anna Lee Chalos-McAleese and Andy McAleese through Feb. 7.

Reception 5 to 6:30 CST January 10

132 S. Central Ave. Paris Illinois

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Nature, landscapes by RCAA’s Jimmie Tabor at Vigo County Public Library in January

Watercolor “Bridgeton Waterfalls” by Jimmie Tabor of Center Point, Indiana

Jimmie R. Tabor of rural Clay County is River City Art Association’s January Artist of the Month at the Vigo County Public Library in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Jimmie Tabor

Tabor grew up in Brazil, Indiana, and attended Indiana State University, studying under department head, Elmer Porter. He was also influenced by local artist Roy Muncie, a talented sign painter who was a great mentor and teacher. Jimmie’s career included 35 years with Sherwin-Williams, working with color blending on a daily basis.

He has worked in several mediums, but has come to love watercolor because of the pleasant surprises as the paints/colors change while drying. His work primarily involves nature (birds, flowers, animals), landscapes, and some portraits.

Watercolor, “Carolina Wren,” by Jimmie Tabor

Jimmie’s work has been shown at the Swope Art Museum, The Gallery at Clabber Girl Museum, Indiana Wildlife Artists exhibitions, Covered Bridge Art Association Gallery in Rockville (best of show award), Rose-Hulman shows and several smaller Wabash Valley galleries.

Jimmie also is a member of Wabash Valley Art Guild and Indiana Wildlife Artists. He  now resides in Center Point, Indiana, with his wife Suzanne and their golden retriever, Sandy.

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RCAA artist portrays mental health in ‘Depression and Back’ collection in Vigo library

Parke County artist Christel Gutelius will share Part 2 of her “Depression & Back: A Retrospective” series of paintings in December as River City Art Association’s Artist of the Month in the Vigo County Public Library in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Depression & Back, Part 1 by Christel Gutelius

The acrylic and mixed media pieces in Part 1 of her series, on display through Nov. 30 at the library, depict many of the overwhelming emotional and physical struggles that Gutelius tried to overcome through her art, which are evident in the titles, “Camo’d Chaos”, “Pain,” “Fatigue,” “Medicated” … and “Help.”

After creating the first 11 expressionistic milestones in her road to recovery from depression, Gutelius found herself at a turning point.

She had made a decision.

Help, acrylic by Christel Gutelius

“The question was ‘Am I going to sit here in this hole, just lay in it and give up,'” Gutelius said.

“I decided I needed to do something. What choices did I have? What could I change? What was unchangeable? St. Francis’ prayer became very real to me, and I wanted to explore the answers. In order to do that, I needed to be ruthlessly honest with myself.
So, ‘Speaking My Truth’ became a painting and I had to commit to that.”

Speaking My Truth-Crystel Gutelius

“Speaking My Truth” and eight other acrylic and mixed media pieces on display in December in the library will show a change in Gutelius’ approach to healing and therefore in her art.

She began painting her way back.

“While some may have found other means, because I am a Christian, when I dealt with my fear, I painted ‘Prayer,’ in which the blood of Christ flows from heaven directly down to me, because I chose to look to Him,” Gutelius said.

Grace by Christel Gutelius

“‘Grace’ was born out of a need to find forgiveness toward those who hurt me and to myself.

“When I tackled my intense anxiety, ‘Meditation’ and ‘Breath & Body’ were important to me. These two pieces show how I was paying attention to my breathing, and where in my body there was tension or pain, and I tried to gain a better flow of energy throughout.”

Gutelius also connected with nature when she could. “Feeling the breeze, hearing the sound of the leaves, the water on the shore, touching the trees, or tasting the rain in the air” inspired her paintings titled “Nature” and “Walking the Shore.”

Along the roads to Alabama to visit her son, Gutelius gained some perspective. “Couldn’t see the forest for the trees, comes to mind,” she said.

The painting, “Solidified Layers” came about “as I thought of how my doctor once told me that therapy was like an onion. Getting through all of the layers, so you know what the true issue is,” Gutelius said. “I really felt like it was more like a geode, with hard dense stone to grind at until you got to the gem.”

Gutelius said she has found a few gems over the course of her journey. She now pictures herself on “The Golden Path,” the last art piece in her retrospective series.

“I surround myself with caution (symbolized by orange in her mixed media piece) and remain diligent of thoughts, people, situations and surroundings, while doing my best in not allowing worry and anxiety to take control,” she said. “My truth is that I know in my deepest being that I receive the Divine Love of God, and through it all He was with me, even if at times I doubted His wisdom and could not feel Him there. I believe together we conquered my fear and I found forgiveness for myself and others.”

Gutelius said she still struggles, physically often, mentally and emotionally at times. “But, I have found my toolbox, and I’m not afraid to use it!”

By sharing her story through her artwork, she hopes that “someone else may find some tools that they can explore to find their own truths, and in doing so, find some peace and healing.”

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