Around the Block: Artists from Our Neighborhood

June 15, 2015 - August 6, 2015

  • Reception: Thursday, June 18, 6–8 p.m.
  • Gallery Talk at 7 p.m.

Image: Suzanne Keith Loechl, Residential II, 24Giertz Gallery at Parkland College, in collaboration with 40 North: Champaign County Arts Council, presents Around the Block: Artists from Our Neighborhood, an exciting and ambitious contemporary exhibition of regional artists. Aron Packer served as juror for this exhibition. He has been living and working with contemporary and folk art in Chicago for more than 25 years. He is the director of Packer Schopf Gallery located in the thriving West Loop gallery district in Chicago. Over the years, his curatorial focus has shifted from folk art to contemporary art; as a result, he curates shows of what he considers to be compelling, with a wide range of material and content. This exhibit is comprised of works of art submitted by artists from our community and reflects the caliber of creative flourish that is present in mid- central Illinois. After selecting the work, he was impressed by the broad range of work submitted. He reflected, “Being judgmental is tough...yet at the same time... it's a joy to dissect and choose work for a show.  I still love doing it after many years of being a curator and gallerist.  In this situation, I don't have control over who enters, so it's always a mystery and pleasure to scroll through the entries to see what is next!”

Participating Artists include Anna Barnes, Sandra Batzli, Gary Beaumont, Roberta Bennett, Jess Beyler, Harry Breen, Cynthia Carlson, Nicholas Cragoe, Beth Darling, Glen Davies, Heather Dent, Carmen Egolf, Pamela Ek, Barbara England, Lisa Marye Evans, Deborah Fell, Hannah Fiske, Tina Giamberdino, Richard Gouinlock, Sara Jahn, Doug Johnson, Judy Jones, Jan Kappes, Jeanette Kavanaugh, Rick Larimore, Taekyeom Lee, Suzanne Keith Loechl, Casey Lowry, Paula McCarty, Stacy McDade, Barbara McDonnell, Sophie McMahan, Melissa Mitchell, Pat Monigold, Melonie Mulkey, David Nolan, Sally Nolan, Anjali Palekar, Jason Patterson, Shannon Batman Percoco, Ellie Pinzarrone, Dot Replinger, Shane Rodems, Michael Schwegmann, Andrea Shields, David Smith, Lynn Hawkinson Smith, Billie Theide, Michael Thomas, Rimas VisGirda, Bryan Warsaw, Rosalind Weinberg, Nathan Westerman, Catherine Wiesener, Charles Wisseman, and Sarah Wisseman.

Lisa Costello, Director of Giertz Gallery at Parkland College remarked, “It was a strong turn out of artists who submitted their work for the exhibit. I think it is going to be a terrific survey of artists who live in the area. I was very pleased that Aron Packer agreed to be our juror. He took the responsibility very seriously and gave a lot of thought to his selection.” She said, “Working with 40 North, Champaign County’s Art Council really help us to get the word out and they have been a valuable resource to our community.”

Image: Suzanne Keith Loechl, Residential II, 24" x 36", oil on panel, 2014