January 3 – February 28, 2019
My years of technical art illustration, graphic art, photography, and engineering drafting experience are the foundations of my art. The approach that I have for drawing, etching, and painting is via my technical background.
Robert Henri and a group called The Eight influenced my thinking about the arts. One of Henri’s books, The Art Spirit was inspirational. All of these are very important not only to me, but should be for all artists. The following are statements that I’ve collected over the years:
1. We are not here to do what has already been done.
2. The artist is the person who leaves the crowd and goes pioneering.
3. All any artist can hope to do is add his fragment to the whole.
4. The artist who has great emotion might burst into tears-but that is far as he will get if he has no practical side. The artist must have the emotional side first, the primal cause of his being an artist, but he must also have an excellent mind, which he must command and use as a tool for the expression of his emotions.
5. No matter how good an artist’s education is his education is in his own hands. All education must be self-education.
6. Few artists will ever mention that they have studied under themselves.
7. We must realize that artists are not in competition with each other.
8. You can learn much from others, but more from yourself.
9. Try to reduce everything you see to the utmost simplicity.
10. A work of art is the result of the effect of the model on the artist. It is not the model we need, but the vision.
11. Works of art are created, not to satisfy the viewer, but the creator.
As I read, draw, etch, and paint, I try to apply the techniques of suggestion rather than showing. Most of my art looks super detailed, but take a closer look. You will find that many details are loosely painted or drawn. I like to call my artistic style as being: Abstract Realism.
I have a great appreciation for all styles and media in the art
Activities in Art
1. Vice-President, Creative Artists Club, Cedar Rapids, IA, 2011-2016
2. State Show Director, Iowa Artists, State Show (May), 2014
3. Travelled (1990 – present) to 48 of the 50 USA states and internationally to 20 countries. Visited dozens of history museums, cathedrals, churches, art museums, art studios, art galleries, parks, commercial manufactures of artistic objects, theater performances, orchestra concerts, ballets, artists, etc. Some of the countries are China, Thailand, Netherlands, Russia, Norway, Italy, Germany, Austria, and others.
4. Christmas, I have created an original drawing or etching for the cover of my personal Christmas card for each of the past 47 years.
5. Library, My personal library contains 1,100 art books out of 2,500 total.
6. Fine Artist, created fine art ink drawings, etchings, engravings, woodcuts, prints, landscape paintings, portraits, custom welded jewelry, and metal sculptures from 1967 and on. Many works have won awards.
January 15, 2019 – April 15, 2019
Unknown Indian artist
Poster featuring the Hindu goddess Kali standing on top of Shiva, c. 1980
Print on plastic
9 13/16 x 6 5/8 in. (24.89 x 16.76 cm)
From the collection of Georgana Falb Foster, 15.2001
Description of Exhibit
Kali is the embodiment of time and the goddess of death and rebirth in Hindu theology. A terrifying manifestation of cosmic energy, Kali is sometimes regarded as the personification of divine destruction, and at other times considered a constant creator. Identifiable by her luminously dark blue or black skin and her exposed tongue dripping with blood, Kali is often depicted garlanded in skulls and clothed in a skirt composed of severed hands. Though formidable to behold, Kali is also the destroyer of fear. To contemplate images of Kali is to encounter the inevitability of death, and to find peace in the ceaseless cycle of life.
This small selection of works from the Indian folk art collection of Georgana Falb Foster illustrates the continual rebirth of images of the goddess herself. For centuries, inexpensive artworks representing Devi (female goddesses) were produced and distributed throughout India and Southeast Asia. Advancements in printmaking technologies such as the introduction of lithography in the late nineteenth century precipitated the production of increasingly colorful and visually dense devotional objects. Printmaking workshops such as the Calcutta Art Studio paired detailed images with prayerful texts. The phrase “brilliant as a dark cloud” is a snippet of one such prayer dedicated to Kali, often included in early poster designs. Iconography and printmaking techniques continued to evolve over the subsequent century, resulting in the posters included in this exhibition. Collected in the 1980s, these mass-produced posters and calendars offer a snapshot of daily devotion and secular visual culture in India during the late twentieth century.
This exhibition is curated by Vero Rose Smith and organized by Legacies for Iowa.
- March 2 – April 27, 2019
William Crook, Jr.
Drawing on location, William Crook Jr. is a familiar sight along Springfield, Illinois streets and county roads. His landscapes and city scenes show his love of neighborhood and bio-region. For over thirty-five years Crook has chronicled the changing life and times of his mid-western home town.
Bill received his bachelors in arts from Sangamon State University in 1982, and in 1990, his master’s degree in painting at Illinois State University, Normal. From 1990 to 2001, Crook served as an adjunct art instructor with MacMurray College, teaching at the Jacksonville Correctional Center. He also taught in adjunct positions at Benedictine University in Springfield, Lincoln College in Lincoln, Illinois, and Lincoln Land Community College campuses in Jacksonville, Taylorville, and Beardstown, Illinois.
Crook’s style of drawing is self-taught although it was greatly influenced by R. Crumb. He has done illustrations in conjunction with the works of such comics luminaries as Harvey Pekar and Tucker Petertill. Currently Crook is a contributor to Mineshaft, a comics and literary magazine from Durham, North Carolina.
Crook founded Prairie Press in 1990. He produces fine art prints and note cards. His printing method uses relief photoengraving plates which are made from his pen and ink originals. Over the years Crook’s work has attracted a local following. In 1982, he self-published a hand printed book containing forty-four street scenes. In 2001, his painting Cliffs in the Shawnee National Forest was purchased for the collection of the Tarbell Library at Eastern Illinois University. In December 2014 he was named Illinois Artist of the Month by I Like Illinois an Illinois State website.
Bill is a member of The Pharmacy Gallery and Art Space where he shows his work in Springfield, Illinois (www.pharmacygallery.com ).
In 2017 Crook published a retrospective collection of his forty years drawing on the streets of Springfield titled “Springfield Illinois: A Pen and Ink Artist looks at His Hometown.
Bill can be reached by phone at 217-726-2072, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. His street address is 1821 Cherry Rd., Springfield, IL 62704. You can also find him at his website: www.williamcrookjr.com.
Come into relationship with art. Receive it, and experience it with your senses. Do not grab ahold of it with your eyes and break it down with critique and analysis as if it were a product or a thing. Meet and embrace it as a living being.
I remember when I was about five years old sitting in our living room with my mother and a small group of her friends. They had gathered to share and “piece” together their lives around a quilting frame. I recognized some of the re-purposed fabrics as dresses both my mother and I had worn. They had been re-cut and re-combined to form a beautiful new pattern. My mother and her friends had an intuitive and intrinsic understanding that their shared stitches and their shared lives wove a blanket of connection. Their quilting was inherently feminist in nature.
My art reflects that early experience of re-purposing and re-combining fabrics. I primarily work with fabrics that I re-purpose. There’s something about the whole process of finding interesting designs in fabrics at thrift shops that is pleasing to me. I enjoy the tactile experience of working with fabric, of cutting out patterns and then collaging, sewing and embellishing them. I primarily work with themes of feminism, spirituality, and our relationship with nature.
My creative expression has been enhanced and informed by my spiritual development. As my mind has slowed and quieted through the years of my spiritual practice, I have experienced a downloading of creative inspiration. I attempt to express through my art the sacred Presence that I experience on the inner. The creative process for me is a dialogue between me, the art, and Source. I want my pieces to communicate the fragrance of this “Presence”. Then it may be possible for the viewer to follow this fragrance back to his or her Higher Sacred Self.
While some of my work is figurative, incorporating primarily female figures and landscapes, I am also attracted to creating geometric mandalas. Mandalas are cross-cultural symbolic representations of the universe which represent wholeness and connection to the Infinite. I begin at the center which represents our connection to the Higher Sacred Self, and then allow the design to naturally flower.
I received my Bachelor’s in Fine Arts from Drake University in 1973, and studied art in Florence, Italy, for a year. Before getting my Master’s in Counseling from the University of Iowa I taught elementary and high school art for three years. After years of providing in and out-patient therapy I was a practicing art therapist for 15 years. I am currently retired and can devote my attention full time to creating art. I am a member of The Pharmacy Gallery and Art Space, a collective of Springfield of Springfield, Illinois artists. I also show locally at the Springfield Art Association’s Liturgical Art Show and the State Fair Professional Art Show. I can be reached by phone at 217-341-7133. You can see some of my work on my website: www.awakenedheartart.com
Illinois State University – Normal, IL | Painting & Sculpting
Augustana College – Rock Island, IL | Figure Drawing
Additional Professional Training:
Shag Rag Alley Workshop: Cold Wax & Oil Painting
2017 Prairie Arts Center – Princeton, IL
2017 The Artry Midcoast – Rock Island IL
2017 Quad Cities Arts / Quad Cities Airport – Moline, IL
2018 Regional Survey of Art, The Next picture Show – Dixon, IL
2018 Galex 52 National Juried Show, Gales Art Center – Galesburg, IL
2017 Abstract Art, The Next Picture Show – Dixon, IL (Mineral Point –Honorable Mention)
2017 64 Arts National Juried Show, Buchanan Center for the Arts – Monmouth, IL
2017 Living Proof Visualization of Hope, Cedar Rapids Museum of Art – Cedar Rapids, IA
2016 Regional Survey of Art, The Next Picture Show – Dixon, IL (A thing about Corn- Best of Show)
2016 Modern Art Show, The Next Picture Show – Dixon, IL (Smash 1 -Second Place)
2016 Galex 50 National Juried Show, Galesburg Art Center – Galesburg, IL
2016 Living Proof Exhibit, The Figgie – Davenport, IA
2018 Galex 49 National Juried Show, Galesburg Art Center – Galesburg, IL
2018 Cancer Center at Unity Point – Moline, IL (Painting on display)
2018 Living Proof | Cancer Survivor Art – Moline, IL (Artwork being used as a bookmark)
December 1, 2019 – January 30, 2020
More to Follow