The challenge: how to best mark the 50th anniversary of Five Rivers MetroParks?
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HOW TO GO
What: “Hidden Treasures,” an art exhibit celebrating the golden anniversary of Five Rivers MetroParks
When: Opening reception is 5:30 to 7: 30 p.m. Wednesday. The artwork will be in the Wintergarden through May 10.
Where: The Schuster Center, Second and Main streets, Dayton
Cost: Free admission; parking in the adjacent Arts Garage is free.
Note: The traveling art exhibit moves to the Kettering Arts Council Gallery at Rosewood Arts Center from June 3-July 31 and then to other locations. Visit metroparks.org/history and click the link to the art exhibit to find out where else it will be.
MEET THE ARTISTS
Amy Kohler Anderson is the gallery coordinator for the Rosewood Gallery located in the Rosewood Arts Centre in Kettering. Her studio is in Yellow Springs.
She says about her poster titled “Plant It Forward”: “I am a tree hugger and love how the MetroParks have a reforestation program designed to remove invasive species and reestablish the native ones. They told me how the squirrels are a big part of the natural reforestation process because they bury seeds but only recover a small portion of them. The piece shows a squirrel planting his acorn, but with the comical twist of a shovel. The background is created with glitter in five-way patterns that represent the FiveRivers MetroParks, as well as the stylized leaf pattern on the ground. I documented the creation of this piece.” To watch Anderson at work, go online to www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESz9xaY0Cr0.
Bing Davis is known as both an art educator and a working artist. He spent 20 years at Central State University where he taught and chaired the art department and has been featured in a Dayton Art Institute exhibition. He was recently commissioned to create a work in honor of the Schuster Center’s 10-year-anniversary.
He says about his poster titled “Ancestral Spirit Dance #563”: “In my works I am concerned with taking a given medium and making a personal statement based on my perception, observations and response to my environment. The rich artistic heritage of African art with its religious, social and magical substance is what I select as an aesthetic an historical link.”
Gretchen Durst Jacobs worked as a corporate graphic designer before opening Art Source, a business that helps local artists sell their work and is now under the direction of the Dayton Visual Arts Center. She lives in Dayton and spends most of her summers in Ontario, Canada, along the shoreline of Lake Huron. That shore and those forests have been a dominant feature in her subject matter for the past six years.
She says about her poster titled “Hiding Oak”: “As I regularly walked past this old oak, it would seem to disappear as the light changed throughout the day. The old tree appeared to melt into the surrounding foliage and then reassert itself when the sun came out.”
Marsha Pippenger has been active in Dayton’s art community for more than 20 years, creating and exhibiting colorful collages and promoting the visual arts. She teaches art history at Wright State University and studio art and art history at Kettering College of Medical Arts. Marsha has worked in graphic arts, taught art in the Dayton Public Schools, and was a founding owner/artist of Conversation Pieces Gallery in Tipp City.
She says about her poster titled “Ode to King Billy”: “It is a visual poem to the monarch butterfly. I was inspired to create this collage when I read Barbara Kingsolver’s novel, ‘Flight Behavior’, about the mysterious appearance of monarchs in Appalachia. Of course I thought of the Butterfly House at Cox Arboretum, as well as the lovely monarchs that grace all our Metro Parks. Folks in Appalachia refer to the monarch as King Billy. With our community’s close ties to Appalachia it seems fitting for this collage to be an Ode to King Billy.”
Ron Rollins is a writer, associate editor of this newspaper and artist who lives in Kettering. His artwork is usually acrylic and pastel on paper or canvas, influenced by the work of his mother, Barbara, a watercolor artist, and by the Abstract Expressionists of the mid-20th century.
He says about his poster titled “Autumn”: “Fall is my favorite season, a time of transition as summer goes rusty and the forest becomes a crinkly campfire of red, yellow, orange, purple and brown. This painting is about the dramatic change in the foliage and the slow, grand sweep of this most wonderful, deliciously melancholy season. Leaves fall, the trees turn; paint can suggest how color is the key to feeling and appreciating it.”