The Gateway East Artists Guild (GEAG) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting fine arts in the Metro East by providing educational opportunities, community art exhibits and fellowship for area artists, GEAG exhibits chair Susan Kunz explained.
The Gateway East Artists Guild members’ exhibit will be on display from Friday through Friday, Feb. 2, at the Edwardsville Arts Center, 6165 Center Grove Road, Edwardsville. “Members include a diverse group of art enthusiasts from beginners to professionals in almost every artistic medium, as well as those who wish to support the arts without creating their own,” Kunz said.
Gateway East Artists Guild President Karen Romani lives in Glen Carbon, but the organization’s members live throughout the region including the Illinois’ towns of Breese, Trenton, Highland, Troy, Edwardsville, Belleville, O’Fallon, Waterloo, Pinckneyville, Collinsville, Fairview Heights, Nashville, Millstadt, Lebanon, Red Bud, Swansea, Granite City, Brighton, Staunton, New Baden, Roxana and Glen Carbon, and the Missouri towns of St. Louis, Cedar Hill and Jackson.
Kunz noted that GEAG always is looking for opportunities to share the group’s love of art with surrounding communities. The organization has displayed art at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows and the Governor French Academy, both in Belleville, Jacoby Arts Center in Alton, and Framations in St. Charles, Missouri.
In addition, each year GEAG hosts a series of workshops, paint-outs and other art activities, publishes a monthly newsletter, awards a college scholarship and student awards, performs community service, provides numerous display opportunities and sponsors at least one major competitive exhibition with generous prizes.
The Gateway East Artists Guild teamed with the Edwardsville Arts Center for the upcoming exhibit after two GEAG members, Marty Spears and Linda Rawson, taught classes at the center, seeing an opportunity for both organizations to work together in a common goal of bringing art to the community.
The Gateway East Artists Guild exhibit will feature a wide variety of art, such as Sue Lowry’s piece titled “Time Rewound” from Lowry’s GlasScapes and Time Machine series.
“This piece, like most pieces from that series, is an abstract that contains steel rods, soldered copper, art glass, clock works, machine parts and other metal components,” Lowry explained. “Soldered copper is the signature material that appears in all my work, including the wearable sculpture jewelry that will be included in the exhibit.”
Ron Vivod will be showing a piece he created through a photograph he took, digitally reconstructed and drawn into.
Michael Anderson, an architectural illustrator and a Southern Illinois University Edwardsville graduate from Belleville, also is participating in the exhibit. Anderson joined the Gateway East Artists Guild in 2002, seeking a destination to share his in-progress paintings and find camaraderie with others who make art.
“I am always impressed by the featured guest speakers at the monthly meetings, as well as the opportunity to get critiques of my own work,” he said. “The GEAG is a great group for any artist, whether a beginner, novice or professional.”
Kunz noted that Anderson described his recent paintings, done mostly on location, “as representational, but that he is willing to improvise on local color with expressive brush strokes, thickly applied paints and added hues. Energy, texture, color and value are essential elements.”
“My inspiration is the way the light falls on the landscape,” Anderson said.
These artists’ works, as well as dozens of others, can be viewed during the GEAG exhibit at the Edwardsville Arts Center. The exhibit opens Friday.
The Telegraph, Reporter Julia Biggs