Artworks Hosts “The Purple Crow Murder” in June

June’s show at Artworks Around Town is titled “The Purple Crow Murder”.  Whenever crows gather, the group is referred to as a “murder”and Jeff Mamone’s Purple Crow Studio is where art is created.  Mystery solved.  The exhibit at the Gallery features four artists from the area; Susan Dorsch, Jeri DeLong, Anne Foreman and Jeff Mamone.  A free public reception will open the show on Friday, June 7 from 5:30-8 p.m.

All four artists bring multiple talents to the show.  While some are known for their particular specialties, this exhibit showcases their other skills as well.  Susan Dorsch has been carving birds in exquisite detail for many years but she is also an accomplished painter. Jeri DeLong has carved and painted gourds and she, as well, has created beautiful paintings. Anne Foreman is known for her dog paintings but has branched out into cat portraiture for this show.  Jeff Mamone can do anything and do it well.  He makes jewelry out of found items, hammering, heating, bending and embellishing them into one of a kind pieces of jewelry.  He also treats his photographs with layers of ink and paint, creating unique effects.

Three of the artists have taught school for a combined total of over 100 years.  Jeri DeLong’s career spanned 36 years and included teaching 4th and 6th grades as well as students with learning disabilities. She has been interested in art since she was in high school but took time out to raise a family.  Her interest in gourds began about 20 years ago when she was asked by a friend to paint an image on a gourd.  After taking classes from Bonnie Gibson, she learned how to carve and burn images into the surface of the dried gourds.

Susan Dorsch also taught for 36 years.  Her wood carvings are exquisite and accurate in every detail.  While most are of birds, she has created other creatures and even makes many of the “props” her birds sit on out of Tupelo wood.  Some of the supports are fashioned out of driftwood pieces that she finds.  Susan also paints and creates collages.  She especially likes working in mixed media.

Foreman returned to her artwork after she raised her six children.  Asked to illustrate a local author’s book opened the door for her to return to her sidelined passion.  She liked drawing as a child and falls back on that medium whenever she needs a rest from color work.  Sister Cecilia taught art at Mount de Chantal Visitation Academy and Anne feels the nun’s classic atelier style approach to instruction was largely responsible for instilling in her a solid foundation in the basics.  She has recently specialized in pet portraiture and her works can be found in homes all over the nation. 

Jeff Mamone is still teaching.  He is in his 37th year currently instructing students at Belmont College in restoration and preservation skills. These classes include wood, plaster and ceramic work.  His students have gone on to work in specialized areas of preservation all over the country.  Previously, he taught art and wood shop in public schools in Ohio.  Mamone has been creating things all his life, beginning his journey by making cartoons as a child.  He makes original works through constant experimentation using metals, glass, wax and oil paints.

Artworks Around Town is a non profit fine art organization dedicated to serving the community.  Located in Wheeling’s Historic Centre Market, the Gallery is open six days a week from Monday to Saturday from 10 am until 5:30 pm.  For information about Artworks and programs offered, consult the website:

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