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Center for the Arts offers an eclectic collection from staff and their friends and family

Julie Fisher, left, has three pieces in the show: a collage and two paintings. She is pictured with Josh Coy, the center director.

Ellen Pill

The Wayne Center for the Arts Friends and Family Exhibition offers an eclectic collection of pieces from local artists who are friends, family or staff at the art center.
 
Sharon Tomassetti works at the art center and put together the exhibition. She explained the show had no restrictions on the type of art.
 
"Anything people wanted to bring that they made," Tomassetti said. She also has a piece in the show.
 
With such broad parameters the show has everything from hand-beaded ballroom dance costumes to a painted rocking chair. Of course there are always a wide variety of more traditional art pieces as well.
 
The two dance costumes created by ballroom dance instructor Yvonne Manz have a combined total of 12,500 Swarovski rhinestones. "I think that's amazing." Tomassetti said.
 
Julie Fisher has three pieces in the show: a collage and two paintings. "I belong to WAGE," Fisher said. "That is a group of artists that are so supportive and positive. It gives you comfort, and it gives you oomph to keep going." WAGE stands for Wayne Artists Group Effort.
 
One of Fisher's paintings was painted a bit unconventionally. "You know the scrubber sponge you have that won't make marks on anything?" Fisher said. "That's what I used."
 
Fisher also has adopted a unique method of signing her creations. "Instead of signing my name, I have three dots and four dots because I was born on the third day of the fourth month."
 
"The thing that I love most about this exhibition," art center executive director Josh Coy said, "is that this is a chance for all our supporters, students, people who have been long-term members and artists in the community to come together and have their own show."
 
The center plans for the exhibition to become an annual event.
 
WAGE founder Susan Shie has three of her signature art quilts in the current show. Two of her entries are specific to Wooster with the other focused on Kent State and Cleveland's Rock Hall.
 
Shie's "Greetings from Wooster" was designed to meet a group challenge to make a postcard representing the artist's community.
 
"So it had to be the same proportion as a postcard," Shie said. "I just made this main street and put the things I wanted on there. Then I told stories about all the buildings. I just wrote and wrote and wrote."
 
The other Wooster-centric piece is a quilt titled "Wooster Farmers' Market." The third quilt, "May 4th Kent State," commemorates the Kent State shootings as well as a tribute to David Bowie.
 
One of the quilts also depict a rhubarb pie. "I just like to put things that are related into a piece," Shie said. "I had students at the house, and we were talking about wanting some rhubarb pie, and I said, 'Well, I know how to get one,' and I just drew it in."
 
Shie along with many of the other WAGE artists are already thinking about what they will create for their annual WAGE show in January and February. The show is based on a different theme every year. "Reflection" has been chosen as this year's theme.
 
Lynn Buckland has been painting for about 20 years and is a 15-year member of WAGE. She has three oil paintings in the exhibition.
 
"[This Friends and Family Exhibition] is interesting. It has a variety of pieces and brings out people with different skill levels. I'm glad to see that there's more and more artwork and artists and a lot more opportunity to be involved in the community."
 
Janice Gallagher is a WAGE member displaying two unexpected pieces: a painted wooden chair and a repurposed olive oil bottle decorated with glass beads and found objects. Ohio artist Elaine Battles brought Gallagher the chair.
 
"[She] brought the chair over and said, 'I thought you could paint that chair,'" Gallagher said. "It was broken. Tony [Gallagher's husband] fixed it. I painted it, and there you have it."
 
As artists and community members mingled and viewed and discussed the array of creativity on display, Gallagher said, "Art brings us all together."
 
Summer Exhibitions, Friends and Family, runs through July 29 at the Wayne Center for the Arts, 237 S. Walnut St., Wooster. All exhibits are free and open to the public during the art center's regular hours. Most items on exhibit are for sale.
 
For more information call 330-264-2787. Find the art center online at www.wayneartscenter.org and on Facebook.
 

Published: July 5, 2017
New Article ID: 2017170709976