Work by Oak Street Art member/ceramic artist Darby Ortolano will be on display in the Time and Place exhibit at the Cedarhurst Center for the Arts in Mt. Vernon, Illinois. The two-person exhibit also features paintings by Jan Kappes.
The exhibit begins January 12, 2020 in the Regenhardt Gallery at Cedarhurst, with an opening reception Saturday, January 11, at 6:30 p.m. Just before the reception, the two artists will be giving a gallery talk at 6:00 p.m. [Post-script from Oak Street Art: The gallery talk was wonderful. Below is a shot from visitors mingling at the reception afterward.]
According to Darby, her imagery comes from her memories and experiences with nature in the different places she has lived: The tropics of Trinidad, the lush woods of New York State, the beaches of Florida, the tree lined streets of New York City, and the beautiful hills of southern Illinois. Darby says the resulting sculptures are a mixture of these associations along with her intuitive process of working with clay.
For a preview of some of Darby's new work for the exhibit, see photos below and also the online gallery here.
Darby is a graduate of the Kansas City Art Institute, is a former faculty member at John A. Logan College, is a member of the Shawnee Hills Pottery Trail, and has a studio in the Logan Historic Arts Neighborhood of Murphysboro, Illinois.
Happy holidays from Oak Street Art! 2019 has been a big year for us. In addition to holding our annual Oak Street Art Fair (with 30+ artists, 7 live musical acts, and children's art projects) in April, we also held two First Friday Art Walk open houses in September and October. Then in November was our Holiday Art Sale with our own members and a few friends.
We also continued our work in the community by creating art lessons and working with second-grade children at the Gen. John A. Logan Attendance Center. Beyond that, we coordinated children's art projects for Father's Day gift making at the Murphysboro Youth and Recreation Center and a winter holiday ornament-making project as part of the Murphysboro Hometown Christmas celebration.
In a happy surprise, Oak Street Art was given a WSIU “Good Neighbor” award for June 2019! According to WSIU, this award “recognizes those who make a positive impact in the community.” We are grateful for second-grade teacher Tabitha Harris for nominating us.
Another big deal was officially moving our headquarters to the old Jones House (401 S. 16th St., Murphysboro, Illinois) in the Logan Historic Arts Neighborhood, thanks to generous space-sharing by the Gen. John A. Logan Museum and director Michael Jones. People-wise, we said goodbye to a few old member/friends moving on to other projects (thank you, Shirley Krienert and Rachel Malcolm Ensor) and welcomed a new one (welcome, Stephanie Dillard).
Below is a photo of our December holiday get-together with the six current members. FRONT row, left to right: Darby Ortolano (ceramics), Sue Gindlesparger (metals, jewelry), Luca Cruzat (printmaking), Cathy Schmidt (leather), Stephanie Dillard (stained glass). BACK row, all alone: Ann R. Fischer (photography).
Thanks to everyone who came out for Murphysboro’s (first of 2019) First Friday Art Walk / Open Studios & Museum night! In the new Oak Street Art headquarters (photo below), we had a steady stream of visitors all evening. We love our great southern Illinois community and are proud to be a part of the Logan Historic Arts Neighborhood.
Visitors came just to look, talk, make new friends, enjoy munchies, and even to buy some local art by our members (jewelry from Sue Gindlesparger, ceramics from Darby Ortolano, weaving/textiles from Shirley Krienert, leather from Cathy Schmidt, and photography from Ann R. Fischer).
See map below for additional sites of September's First Friday, including the individual studios of Oak Street Art members Luca Cruzat and Rachel Malcolm Ensor, as well as the General John A. Logan Museum, Pat's Prairie Garden, and GeekBetty Vintage and More.
Onward to next month! Hope to see you for the second First Friday on Friday, October 4, from 5 to 8 p.m.
Five Oak Street Art Members' Works on Exhibit in 2019 LOCALITY Biennial at Carbondale Community Arts
Five Oak Street Art members have pieces included in the LOCALITY Biennial at Carbondale Community Arts in Carbondale, Illinois.
Oak Street artists Luca Cruzat (printmaking), Rachel Malcolm Ensor (painting), Ann R. Fischer (photography), Sue Gindlesparger (metalsmithing/jewelry), and Darby Ortolano (ceramics) all have one or more pieces on display.
The exhibit will be open for viewing through September 13. About half of the exhibit is in the CCA main gallery (Artspace 304 at 304 W. Walnut St.), and the other half is in the Civic Center Corridor Gallery across the street at 200 S. Illinois Ave.
The free public reception will be Friday, September 6, from 5 to 7 p.m. See the event page at www.facebook.com/events/643913182798007.
Two Oak Street Art members have art work (images below) in the 28th Cedarhurst Biennial at the Cedarhurst Center for the Arts in Mt. Vernon, Illinois: Painter Rachel Malcolm Ensor and ceramic artist Darby Ortolano.
The juror for the Biennial, Wassan Al-Khudhairi, was the Chief Curator of the Contemporary Art Museum in St. Louis. The call area of submission for this competition was very wide: all of Illinois south of Interstate 80 (Chicago), as well as the metro areas around St. Louis, Evansville (Indiana), and Paducah (Kentucky).
The exhibit runs from July 28 through October 6, 2019 in the New Semantics Gallery at Cedarhurst (click for details). View the complete set of selected works here.
Ortolano and Ensor are both graduates of the Kansas City Art Institute, and each have held college-level faculty positions in the area. Both have studios in the Murphysboro Historic Art Neighborhood, home to the General John A. Logan Museum.
Works from Darby Ortolano and Luca Cruzat Selected for 2019 Shrode Fine Art & Craft Competition Exhibit
We'd like to congratulate Oak Street Artists Darby Ortolano and Luca Cruzat on having work selected for the juried 2019 Shrode Fine Art and Craft Competition Exhibit. A total of 199 works were submitted, and only 59 were selected for the exhibit, which runs from February 24 through April 28, 2019, at the Regenhardt Gallery in the Shrode Art Center (at Cedarhurst Center for the Arts).
Darby Ortolano’s piece,Vase (shown below), is part of her continuing focus on making pots for flowers. She has been making vases for over 30 years, and this latest form is inspired by the lovely layering of organic materials that litter the forest floor. The strong vertical lines reference the flower stems, and the small opening allows for a few fresh flowers to be held upright for all to enjoy. Congratulations, Darby, on winning a Merit Award for this piece!
Luca Cruzat's print, Neither Bee Nor Cicada (below: collagraph, screenprint, and colored pencil), was also chosen by juror Doug Johnson. This print comments about paths that women could take when becoming a woman. Some choose paths more like bees, while others' paths are more like cicadas. Here, neither way was chosen.
Congratulations, Darby and Luca! Both artists will also be participating in the upcoming 2019 Oak Street Art Fair on Saturday, April 27, 2019.
"Reverie #1" from Oak Street Art member and ceramic artist Darby Ortolano was selected for inclusion in the juried "Attention to Detail" exhibit at Art St. Louis. See image below.
To see Darby's beautiful piece in person, the exhibit runs from January 12 through February 13 at Art St. Louis, 1223 Pine St. in St. Louis, Missouri, with an opening reception on Saturday, January 12 from 5 to 7 p.m.. You may also view the exhibit for free weekdays 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (closed on major holidays and Sundays).
We invite you to read Darby's artist statement, immediately following the photo of her piece., below To see all included works online, check out the Facebook photo album here.
Growing up in both the tropics of Trinidad and the lush landscape of New York State gave me a rich visual repertoire of nature's sensual and evocative influences. Residing now in rural southern Illinois continues to feed the wellspring of these passions. My current work in clay is sculptural; wall hangings and table top sculptures which embody nature’s forms into complex, abstract microcosms. I work spontaneously to elicit an interior world which is then made visible.
Oak Street Artist Darby Ortolano Shares Her Love of Clay in Pottery Project for Local Second Graders
The children learned a bit of Murphysboro history by viewing an Egyptian brick, as well as by creating individual pinch pots. Darby was assisted by Oak Street Artist Shirley Krienert (fibers, mixed media).
The Oak Street artists continue with outreach to their Murphysboro community. See more photos below.
Two members of Oak Street Art will be showing and selling their work as part of the upcoming shop304 Showcase by Carbondale Community Arts.
Shop local for the holidays and delight your family and friends with one-of-a-kind art gifts by Darby Ortolano (ceramics) and Sue Gindlesparger (metals, jewelry). See samples of each artist's work below.
On Sunday, November 18 (2018), Shop304 will host this pop-up art sale from 1 to 5 p.m. in downtown Carbondale, Illinois. Stop by ArtSpace 304 at 304 W. Walnut St. in Carbondale! See map below.
In support of The Women's Center, Oak Street Art members set up shop at the Old Feed Store venue in Cobden, Illinois, on Saturday morning, November 3, 2018.
Sue Gindlesparger (metals, jewelry) and Darby Ortolano (ceramics) were on hand for good conversation and to share the work of all seven Oak Street Art members.
We were especially delighted to be invited to participate by Women's Center board member Stephanie Dillard. Stephanie also happens to be a talented stained glass artist featured in the 2018 Oak Street Fine Arts Fair. (UPDATE: Stephanie is now a member of Oak Street Art!)
A portion of all Oak Street Art sales from this "Feed the Need" fundraiser went directly to the Women's Center. In particular, proceeds were earmarked specifically for services to Union County survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.
Oak Street Art