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Wabash Valley Artists’ Works Fill Moench Hall for Spring Exhibit

March 6, 2012

Nearly 100 artworks by 22 artists from the Wabash Valley Art Guild are being featured in a spring exhibition that fills two hallways of Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's Moench Hall.  An opening reception, with several of the local artists, will take place on Thursday, March 8, from 4:30-7 p.m. at the college's oldest classroom building.

The exhibition showcases artworks by Terre Haute residents Bill Aitken, Jane Dusanic, Bruce Fiscus, John Hemminghouse, Roger King, Phyllis Ling, Laura Mason, Jim McMullen, Sue McCallum and Peggy Summers.  Current and former Vigo County School Corporation art teachers Jo Anne Fiscus, Edward Holloman and Marsha Stewart are also part of the exhibit, along with Julie Bricker of Brazil, and Eloise Lovell and Bill Bolz of Parke County.

Other artists featured are Edith Acton, Marvetta Bee, Jeanette Ellingsworth, Skip Evans, Thomas Makosky and Pria Rahmouni.

      Artist works 1

Aitken, a retired local dentist, is a self-professed "tinkerer," and works with his hands to create model airplanes, grandfather clocks, china cabinets and paintings from his own beautiful photographs,

Bolz is a veteran painter who became serious about showing and selling his works through "Brushstrokes by Bill Bolz" and at the Covered Bridge Art Gallery in Rockville.  He loves the vivid colors you can get with acrylics, but also favors the soft blending and the "mind of its own" nature of watercolors.  He has a lake house on Rocky Fork Lake near Turkey Run State Park.

Bricker is an avid drawer who has won over 30 awards for her artworks.  Her celebrity portraits have been sold all over the world and she has rendered over 100 portraits of Indians from a variety of tribes.  While living in Arizona, she was a member of the Arizona Cowboy and Indian Artists. 

Dusanic works primarily with watercolor, watercolor pencil and ink.  In recent years she had had good success with notecards made from digital copies of many of her paintings.  She invites the viewer to see the world through her eyes, including cats with attitudes, vacation scenes and flowers.

Jo Anne Fiscus is a former art teacher at Terre Haute's Woodrow Wilson Middle School and current Art Guild president.  She has painted several large-scale murals, including a 50-foot artwork of a coral reef for Exotic Aquariums of Miami, Fla., and the Combs Chapel for Union Hospital.  She is always looking for that dramatic light, that unusual color and that story in a single frame.  Jo Anne and her husband, Bruce, have a studio in northeastern Vigo County.

Hemminghouse is retired professional sign painter whose artistic touch has moved in recent years to wood carving.

Holloman, art teacher at Terre Haute's Chauncey Rose Middle School, assisted in the planning and painting of the Boys & Girls Club mural.  He annually conducts art workshops for the Halcyon Gallery's Summer Youth Art Program and the Eastern Illinois University's Celebration: A Festival of the Arts.

King is known for sharing his painting knowledge and techniques.  He taught painting on television in West Virginia and Arizona, and has hosted seminars in Arizona, New Mexico and Arkansas.  He specializes in watercolors and his subjects vary from still life to flowers to cathedrals along with scenes from the Southwest. 

Artist Works 2            

Ling is a Parke County resident whose artworks specialize in animals and nature scenes.  She enjoys sketching outdoor scenes with pencil or standing at her easel and bringing her ideas to life. 

Mason's watercolors, collages and monoprints have been displayed in solo and group shows throughout the area.  Two of her paintings are part of Rose-Hulman's permanent collection, one is displayed at Parks Community Hospital and several others are in private collections.

McCallum became interested in photography while undergoing successful treatment for breast cancer.  The daughter-in-law of respected local photographer Robert Kadel, she has become an award-winning photographer in her own right.

McMullen has been looking through lenses for most of his life. First, he spent over 30 years as a research scientist looking through microscope lenses.  He now looks at life through the camera lens.  His eye for detail and his chemistry background have been great assets for darkroom developing and printing.  

Stewart is a former Vigo County teacher who has always made art a part of her life.  In retirement, art gives her an outlet that is both peaceful and rewarding.  She has become activated by the sacred, aesthetic colors and culture of the American Southwest.  Since 2003, her art has been sold and displayed in Arizona galleries.

Summers, also a retired local school employee, is a self-taught artist who favors artworks in chalk because it can be easily blended and shaded.  Her favorite subjects are seascapes and landscapes, while Indiana's changing seasons offer several fascinating scenes to capture on canvas.

Rose-Hulman's spring exhibit is open for public viewing on weekdays, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., through May 26.  Guided tours can be arranged by calling Steve Letsinger, director of art programs and art curator, at 812-877-8452 or