“All” Member Show Opens As January Gallery Hop

On the First Friday of the New Year, January 6, 2017, artist members of Artworks Around Town at the Centre Market will be showing their newest work. Rarely do so many artists show their work together in any gallery setting.

Artworks Around Town, art cooperative, gallery and gift shop in the Centre Market in Wheeling has been in existence since 1998. Still there are people in the local area who have no idea this organization exists.

This unusual cooperative artist’s group is the only one left from over 30 originally formed artist cooperatives in the state of West Virginia in the 1980s and 1990s. Up until earlier last year there was still one more artist’s cooperative in Davis, WV. Now Artworks is the sole survivor of those cooperatives.

The group of artist members of Artworks are from diverse backgrounds. Few members are ever full time artists; they always have “day jobs”. It’s difficult to survive as a full time artist. Artworks members include teachers, a psychologist, an accountant, a nurse, a beautician, a lawyer, a computer expert, a maintenance supervisor, a manager of a health department, an electrician, and a carpenter by trade. That’s only naming a few of the actual professions of the present 28 members of Artworks.

Visitors to the gallery in the Centre Market are always astounded by the variety and quality of the artists’ work

displayed in the organization’s space in the upper house of the Centre Market. In the gallery space, the visitor will find paintings in oil, watercolor, and acrylic in genres of abstract, realism, and surrealism, photographs, gourd art, carvings of birds, horses, pottery both artistic and household useful, fiber art in silk and knitted, wall tiles, collages, stained glass works, jewelry designed and crafted by member artists. There is more, but visitors are encouraged to seek out artistic surprises for themselves in the gallery space.

This year two small sitting areas were added to the gallery along with an extensive library   of art books which can be read by visitors.  There is also a small gift shop among all the other areas for browsing.This coming First Friday on January 6th, gallery hop visitors will be able to view the newest, the latest, or work never shown before by Artwork’s member artists. It’s an unusual situation and a show well worth a visit.

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November Gallery Hop features the “Mixed Media” of Ed Doughty

Carved Cardinal

Carved Cardinal

Ed Doughty is a multi-media artist and craftsman.  From building houses to creating tiny carved walnut baskets, Ed’s skill as an artist, carpenter, cabinet maker, and wood carver is as varied as it is phenomenal.  On Friday, November 4, 2016, his solo show opens at ARTWORKS around town at the Centre Market.  As part of Wheeling’s First Friday celebration, Ed’s show, “Mixed Media” will be open from 5:30 to 8:00 and continue through the month of November.

Carvings of large and small historically and detail accurate items is one of Ed’s specialties. His newest series is his hand carved collection of spinning wheels.  Each spinning wheel has been researched and is accurate in every detail.  Another, small in size, carved collection is of authentically researched, once again, Viking weapons.

River Plant

River Plant

Ed’s expertise in carving ranges from hand carved vintage trains and fire engines, historical scenes of Civil War cannonade groups to carved horses and saddles.  His newest carving adventures have been in creating realistically carved birds.  Taking lessons from another Artworks member, Susan Dorsch, Ed, in his retirement, is learning and researching.  Susan generously agreed to tutor Ed in carving realistic birds.  Several of the birds from Susan’s lessons will be part of the exhibit.
Ed’s acrylic paintings of great detail will also be part of this show.  All new works of local landmarks including the Pike Island Dam and Lock will be on display.  Ed’s acrylic paintings are almost photographic in detail.

Spinning Wheels

Spinning Wheels

His paintings and carvings include a monumental 14 foot model of the Wheeling Suspension Bridge, (currently at the Underground Railroad Museum in Flushing, Ohio), his historically accurate trains, wagons, and carriages with their horses have been displayed lately at Towngate Theatre in Wheeling, the Underground Railroad Museum in Flushing, the Delf Norona Museum in Moundsville, the Monroe Art Center in Woodsfield, and the Bellaire City Library.  His newest award was from the Steubenville Art Association for his “ Sammis Lock and Barge” painting adding to his long list of awards and shows.  His 14 foot Wheeling Suspension Bridge toured the state of West Virginia for over a year under the auspices of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History.

River Locks

River Locks

Ed still resides in Martins Ferry with his wife, Helen, painting in the winter months and carving in the warmer months.  Be sure that Ed is already researching a new skill or subject area for his ever curious mind and artistic skill to conquer or expand.

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July Gallery Hop to feature hometown artist Janet Sheehan

Blue Herron (Mixed Media)

Blue Herron (Mixed Media)

Multi-talented watercolor artist, Janet Sheehan, is the featured artist at ARTWORKS around town for the month of July 2016. Opening on First Friday, July 1st, from 5:30-8:00PM, this show at Centre Market, 2200 Market Street is open to the public. Refreshments are always part of the opening.

Janet Sheehan is known as a lawyer and teacher, but her passion is for painting and drawing. As a child and an adult, she has always been drawn to the love of the natural world, which she portrays in her watercolor and colored pencil renderings. “Birds, animals, flowers and scenic views are all equally likely to capture my attention”, confesses the artist. Starting at the age of 14 Janet began her artistic studies with the Art Instruction Schools of America. Furthering her education at the University of Massachusetts-Boston and the University of Pittsburgh, Janet continued to keep up with her art education as well as her law studies. She took undergraduate courses in commercial art, modern art, and art history.

Wild Orchids (Watercolor)

Wild Orchids (Watercolor)

After practicing law and raising a family, Janet continued her art education with local instructors including Janet Rodriguez, Bill Rettig for watercolor and Bev Beatty for colored pencil studies. Once she became more confident with her artistic skills she began to teach watercolor at ARTWORKS around town. She also is the chair of the “Painting with Patients” outreach program of ARTWORKS to the patients of the Bishop Hodges Continuous Care Center.

Janet is an artist member of ARTWORKS, a juried member of the West Virginia Watercolor Society and a member of the Colored Pencil Society of America. In the All Members Show of the West Virginia Watercolor Society recently, Janet received a coveted Merit Award.   Her work has been in many regional shows and is owned by private individuals and corporations across the United States.

White Rooster (Colored Pencil)

White Rooster (Colored Pencil)

Janet wants her work to spotlight “the beautiful, noble, and uplifting in nature and life, often focusing on images that might otherwise be overlooked.” She hopes to communicate her artistic feeling to the viewer through her images.

Her works will be on display in the Studio Gallery of ARTWORKS for the month of July.

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Sharon Hanse & Lynn Anderson featured artists at February Gallery Hop

Artists who appreciated each other’s craft, these Eastern Ohio residents are both members of Artworks. Sharon Hanse and Lynn Anderson are the featured artists of the February show opening in the Studio Gallery at Artworks Around Town on Friday, February 5, 2016.

Lynn Anderson - Early Autumn

Lynn Anderson – Early Autumn

Artworks Around Town is a cooperative of 26 artists residing in the Centre Market at 2200 Market Street. Artworks sponsors the opening of two new free art shows each month on the first Friday. The public is invited and a buffet of refreshments is part of the opening from 5:30PM to 8:00PM on Feb 5th. The featured artists will be present as will a number of artist members of Artworks.

Sharon Hanse and Lynn Anderson create art that needs concentration and attention to detail. Calligraphy, Sharon Hanse’s specialty that she displays at Artworks is only one of the many forms of art work she studied at the Cleveland Art Institute and Cleveland Community College. Furthering her love of the exquisite creation of works of art centering around letters, led Sharon to learn paper marbling, papermaking, paste paper technique, bookmaking, illuminating, and gilding. She has studied with some of the finest calligraphers in the country including Sheila Waters, Thomas Ingmire, Peter Thornton, John Stevens, Marsha Brady, Mark vanStone, Carl Rohrs and Leana Fay.

Sharon Hanse - Illuminated V

Sharon Hanse – Illuminated V

Now she teaches these various skills in classes at Artworks, a variety of art centers and various calligraphy guilds. Mrs. Hanse has won numerous prizes and accolades for her exquisite combination of lettering with other art skills. Her letter “V” was included in the into the 24th Edition of The Speedball Textbook. The Speedball Textbook has been printed in various editions since 1915 and for many people was their first source for learning calligraphy.

Lynn Anderson creates paintings, digital art, and mixed media. Somehow, someway Lynn always manages to create some dream-like or other worldly quality in each of her creations. They are romantic and dreamily rendered, but can also be precise as in creating kaleidoscopic creations. Recently retired from an editorship of a nationally circulated four-color magazine, Lynn has turned to creating more artwork. She studied art at Ohio University and has exhibited her work in a variety of galleries throughout Ohio and West Virginia. The prize winning artist sees “the act of creating art as an end in itself for me. When I am hard at work on a piece, my mind goes to a different plane, and the hours seem to fly by without my even noticing.” The discussion of art is much more tedious to Lynn than the creation of art.

She sees her work as “solving problems or puzzles” that she sets for herself. Always pleased that the viewer enjoys her finished art, Lynn realizes that what the viewers sees in her work is often not what she sees as the artist and creator of the finished piece of art work.

Lynn Anderson - O'Anita!

Lynn Anderson – O’Anita!

These women create art that is not the norm. Using skill, color, and a variety of materials their art is unusual as well as beautiful. They carefully chose their color and form to enhance what they try to present to the viewer. The beauty of the piece often doesn’t reflect all the many diligent hours of work that it has taken to create such complex pieces.

As Sharon Hanse has stated, “Nothing is more satisfying than to create a beautiful work of art using words that are inspirational, uplifting, thought provoking and comforting. And Lynn Anderson agrees, “That’s the magic of art: everyone takes something different, and individually REWARDING, from the experience.”

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December Gallery Hop Remembers Liz Neumann

Liz painting at Paint Historic Wheeling

Liz painting at Paint Historic
Wheeling

A retrospect of the painting career of Elizabeth (Liz) Neumann will be the December show at ARTWORKS around town. Each month Artworks opens new shows in each of their two galleries. The opening will be Friday, December 5th, from 5:30 to 8pm, with a free reception at the Artworks gallery in the Centre Market, 2200 Market Street, Wheeling.

Liz’s paintings will be shown in the large Studio Gallery. In the North Gallery will be the artwork of Martins Ferry Middle and High School students of Natalie Zambori.

Liz Neumann was the “face” of the art community in Wheeling until her death in April of this year. Starting as a young girl illustrating a Girl Scout calendar at the age of 10; she was still painting, taking lessons, and participating in shows until her death at 89. Her love of art and its dissemination to all, was her mission. She used a quote from Robert Henri’s book THE ART SPIRIT to voice her love of her craft, “Art is, after all, only a trace-like, a footprint which shows that one has walked bravely and in great happiness.”

Capturing a European Landscape

Capturing a European Landscape

After working in acrylic, oil, and watercolor, Liz found acrylic suited her best, often workedwith a palette knife. Her paintings often portrayed her beloved Foxberry Farm, where she also held plein aire painting events for her fellow artists of Artworks. Many of her landscapes were painted in Europe during her painting trips with the Journees de Pienture, a group of international artists gathered from England, France, Switzerland, Germany, as well as other parts of the United States. Her work shows her love of the earth, its color, texture and vibrancy. Emulating her favorite artist, Van Gogh, Liz’s work always had a connection to her life and her travels which often included her large immediate family.

Painting at Foxberry

Painting at Foxberry

Her distinctive style has been attractive to many patrons and her work hangs in numerous local homes and offices. Through the Journees de Pienture, her work is also in various international collections as well.

Being president of ARTWORKS around town was not just a club office, but rather, a mission. Liz desired to spread interest and participation in the arts through the non-profit charitable Artworks. She was the founder of the annual Lobster Fest and part of the committee which organized and supported the plein aire event, Paint Oglebay and later Paint Historic Wheeling. Liz represented the artists in this community on the Wheeling Arts Commission and was instrumental in creating the Wheeling Arts Fest.

Liz Painting at Wheeling Arts Fest

Liz Painting at Wheeling Arts Fest

As a lifelong resident of Wheeling and Wheeling artist, who often portrayed the area in her paintings, Liz promoted both the arts and her beloved home town hoping to show the best of Wheeling through the painting and support of other local artists.

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Watercolorist L.W. “Bill” Rettig, Jr. featured at October First Friday

Bill Demonstrating during Paint Historic Wheeling 2015

Bill Demonstrating during Paint Historic Wheeling 2015

The beautiful and often visually pleasing watercolors of local well known artist L.W. “Bill” Rettig, Jr. are the featured paintings and show in the Studio Gallery for the month of October, 2015, at Artworks Around Town at the Centre Market. The opening for this show is on First Friday, Oct 2, 2015, from 5:30 to 8:00PM. Refreshments are always a part of each Artworks monthly opening.

Beautiful, graceful, boldly yet hauntingly hued are the watercolor paintings of Wheeling, West Virginia’s most well known watercolorist. Bill’s work is gentle and tranquil yet strikingly alive in a well effusion of color and tones which are the glory of the subjects of what he sees all around him sun-drenched country sides…wild life…bustling streets…antiquated buildings…city life. The almost delicate style of Bill’s work becomes even more fascinating when you meet him, for Bill, in contrast to his art, is a bear of a man. He is a former PENN STATE fullback/linebacker who has lost none of his intimidating energy.Rettig 2

Although essentially self-taught, Bill has studied watercolor and pencil with Yar Chomicky at Penn State University and has worked with Richard Nitowski and Homer Hacker-AWS, who recognized early in Bill’s career his unique passion and energy in his works.

Winner of many regional and national awards, he has held solo exhibits in Kansas City, Mo., Cleveland, OH, Middletown, OH, Harrisburg, PA , Pittsburgh, PA, and Charleston, SC.

Rettig 4Bill’s works are part of many private and commercial collections. He has been commissioned by many large corporations for a series of work for their executive offices, branches, and customers. Among those corporations are Armco, Inc., Frank B. Hall, Equibank, PNC, Mellon Bank, Penn Champ, Amerikohl, Omega, HDH, Inc., A.C. Dellovade, Ellwood Federal Savings Bank, Eat-N-Park, American Glass Research, Baglier Buick, GMC, Mazda, Citizen National Bank, Pennsylvania State University, and William J. Green and Associates. And in honor of Joe Paterno’s 300th career win at Penn State University, Bill was commissioned by the university to do a watercolor portrait of Sue and Joe Paterno.

Bill currently resides in Forest Hills, Wheeling, WV, with his wife Debbie. He can be reached at 304-233-6477 or at lwrettig@comcast.net.

 

 

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