Upcoming Exhibitions 


Upcoming Events

    • February 07, 2020
    • 5:00 PM


    January 10 - February 14, 2020
    Gallery Talk: Friday, January 7, 5 PM

    Join artist Melissa Oresky and Dr. Keith Pluymers, assistant professor in the department of History at Illinois State University, as they discuss Oresky's exhibition Growing Time, on view from January 10 - February 14. Oresky's paintings and drawings are guided by the processes of plants: their iterative growth, movement, decay, and regeneration.

    Melissa Oresky has shown her work in painting, collage, and video nationally and internationally, with recent shows at Tripod Space Project, Busan, South Korea; Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago; Elmhurst Art Museum, Elmhurst, Illinois; Minnesota State University, Mankato; and K. Imperial Fine Art, San Francisco. Oresky received a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and an MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has attended residencies including Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine, and The Santa Fe Art Institute, New Mexico. Originally from Maryland, she lives and works in Normal, Illinois, where she is a Professor of Painting and Drawing at Illinois State University.

    Dr. Keith Pluymers is Assistant Professor in the department of History at Illinois State University where he works on early modern environmental history. Prior to joining ISU, he was a postdoctoral instructor at Caltech and did a PhD at the University of Southern California. His book, "No Wood, No Kingdom: Political Ecology in the English Atlantic" is under contract with the University of Pennsylvania Press.

    • February 29, 2020
    • 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM


    February 28 - April 10, 2020
    Awards Ceremony: Saturday, February 29, 2-3 PM
    Sponsored in part by the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts

    The 93rd Annual McLean County Amateur Art Exhibition will feature high school, university, and adult artists. Juried works of painting, graphics, photography/new media, and sculpture will be selected for cash merit awards in each category and division. The Merwin Medal will be awarded to the most outstanding artwork and the Ashely C. Ritter Most Promising Art Award to the artwork exhibiting the most future potential. Artist, Aaron Yount will jury.

    • March 06, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    February 21 - April 10, 2020
    Reception: Friday, March 6, 5-7 PM

    Aaron Yount

    My project, “East Meets West”, represents my current study of wildlife within the Rocky Mountain range. With this body of work I hope to capture artistic observations of wildlife in its natural state including seasonal behaviors within the region. To accomplish this has required extensive travel and fieldwork over the past five years. From Colorado to Northern Montana, I have experienced memorable moments with wild creatures. Some moments have been memorable because of obvious beauty while others have displayed hardship and a will to endure. My hope is to share these experiences through my art.

    Born and raised in rural Illinois, Aaron developed an appreciation for the outdoors. His subject matter ranges from hummingbirds at his studio’s feeders to the great bison herds of Yellowstone’s Lamar Valley in the West. While naturalism and firsthand study of nature are visible in his work, he does not abandon the use of good design and other sound artistic principles.

    Following his residency at the Hiram Blauvelt Art Museum, Aaron began painting the wildlife of the Rocky Mountains. “East Meets West” has been the focus of his work since leaving his position at the Blauvelt Museum.

    Pamela Cather

    I started photographing wildlife when we moved to Lake Bloomington and we found an oasis in the middle of cornfields. The plethora of wildlife, especially the numerous migrating birds in the spring, has mesmerized me.  Life seems slower here.  As a place of peace and relaxation it exhibits God’s hand. I seek the hidden adventure and take time to let the beauty come to me. Once the camera and light are one with God’s creation, I pull the trigger to capture the unique personalities and behavior I see. Then I am compelled to share it with my fellow midwesterners to encourage them to slow down, look around and see what is beyond the cornfields.

    Pamela Cather (www.reflectetc.com) is a Master Photographer from Central Illinois whose passion is photographing the wildlife that she sees every day. Cather, a lifelong Midwesterner, is an Indiana native. She has been a portrait photographer for 11 years. She started focusing on wildlife when she moved to Lake Bloomington in 2013 and she saw an American White Pelican for the first time out her own window.

    Cather was awarded her Master of Photography degree from the Professional Photographers of America in January of 2018. This degree is awarded for superior photographic skills demonstrated through PPA’s International Photographic Competition, advanced education, and service to the industry. Several of her wildlife images have been included in PPA’s General and prestigious Loan Collections.

    “Wildlife of Lake Bloomington” is a presentation Cather gives to local organizations.  She talks about her passion for wildlife photography and shares some of her favorite images taken at or around Lake Bloomington. She discusses how she finds the wildlife, best lighting for creating the moment, and easy creative techniques she uses for photographing wildlife.

    Her wildlife images have also been displayed in several locations in Central Illinois, including Scout’s Downtown Cafe, The Community Cancer Center, 2nd Presbyterian Church’s “What’s So Good about Good Friday” Show, BCPA’s Artgasm Gala, Peoria’s New Ronald McDonald House permanent collection and even on the cover of the Gridley Telephone phone book.


    • March 06, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    February 21 - April 10, 2020
    Reception: Friday, March 6, 5-7 PM

    Cathie Crawford’s color reduction woodcuts are often meditations on water, exploring it as a source of replenishment and renewal. Her atmospheric color fields are punctuated by rippling lines, creating ambiguous spaces that hint at landscape.

    • April 17, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    April 17 - May 22, 2020
    Reception: Friday, April 17, 5-7 PM

    For her most recent body of work, Susan Emmerson’s imagery is that of creating and destroying; of depicting the horrible violence that natural storms, worsened by human mistakes, can do to our structural environment and to our fellow humans. Her wall sculptures depict disheveled, broken surfaces where Tyvek painfully peels away like paint or skin, exposing a raw inner core. Everyday objects become precious; she uses their bits and pieces as signifiers of the lost reassurance of a safe and intact home. Her work exists in the space between image and object; between the picture and the palpable. The drawings she makes are meditative renderings of the ridiculous and horrifying scope of the violent destruction of our now insecure world. They serve to present a different aspect of the question of what a home is and what happens to our human spirit when the physical safety of home is destroyed.

    Specifically feeble and precisely precarious, Lisa Walcott’s work translates elements of daily life. Moods, guilt, sensations, monotony, accumulation and change are given bodies in objects and movement. Spaces of the mind are realized in physical form and daydreams animated. Up close and in combination they begin to represent the fluidity and contradictions of the everyday. The task of locating and giving form to shapeless sensations like presence, agitation or what it feels like to be full after eating will eventually fail because these feelings can never quite be manifested. However, there is often something more desirable in the always-absent compared to the attainable. The attempt to find shape and materiality for these abstract ideas involves collecting, combining, squinting, and meandering forward. The works are as energetic as they are visual—agitation buzzes overhead as a housefly and presence unexpectedly gurgles from an unknown space. In many cases, the objects feel essential, like they couldn’t be anything besides what they are—their physicality is vital for them hold their position and their essence is what the work is about. There is a sense of balance that is on the verge of being lost as joints are precarious and elements within the pieces are codependent—everything has a place for now.



    • April 17, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    April 17 - May 22, 2020
    Reception: Friday, April 17, 5-7 PM

    The three-dimensional constructions Jim Neeley builds press him to think like a graphic designer, use his hands like a finish carpenter, and obsess over the details. His inspirations are numerous and varied. The iconic design and culture of the 1970s. Bird’s-eye views of the rural landscape where he cycles. High/low architecture, studied wherever he travels. Quirky things, irreverent things. Unrelated bits and pieces such as local found objects and recycled stuff that he re-imagines and reorganizes into meticulous, elegant tableaus, all neatly contained in handmade boxes. Superfluous details of the objects he incorporates into these pieces are “erased,” leaving just the essence of mundane elements. For the observer, he hopes that his work pings a distant recollection, conjures a smile, and also inspires a bit of self-indulgence.

    Wayne Bertola combines found objects and images—the discarded debris of the once-functional and the most humble of materials—in a way that demonstrates their capacity to transform. Recontextualized, the objects engage the viewer in a creative dialogue of association, allusion, and reverie beyond the limitations of the utilitarian and preconceived notions of what is worthy of notice and what constitutes value.



    • April 17, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    April 17 - May 22, 2020
    Reception: Friday, April 17, 5-7 PM

    Karl Smith’s still life photos utilize the medical supplies he personally used to treat his diabetes since he was a teen. The debris includes hundreds of syringes, insulin bottles, glucose testers and supplies, and hospital wrist bands. More recently, the series shifted to photographs of his life after receiving kidney and pancreas transplants, including photographs of his organ donor’s family.


    • June 05, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM



    May 29 - July 10, 2020
    Reception: Friday, June 5, 5-7 PM

    Nichole Gronvold Roller creates ambiguous spaces that possess an unpredictable gravity or no gravity at all. She constructs these spaces with vortexes, fragmented planes, and energy pathways borrowed from both human-made and natural systems. Her shaped canvases explore the material, geographical, and cultural influences of architectural design.

    David Linneweh’s work reflects on the idea of the American Dream, asking if its tenets are based on illusion or reality. He begins with photographs of suburban streets, which are then printed and transferred over a wood veneer. Layers of graphite and paint serve to emphasize or flatten compositional elements, resulting in images that are altered and weathered by time.

    Megan Hinds explores ecosystems and architecture in her three-dimensional prints, drawing inspiration from beehives to human cities. Her layered compositions provide opportunities for visual exploration and discovery, with camouflage and chaos giving way to organized focal points.



    • June 05, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    May 29 - July 10, 2020
    Reception: Friday, June 5, 2020

    This exhibition will feature the work of three photographers, Ted Diamond, James Kozak, and Tyler Mardis. Their images capture the beauty of the vast Illinoislandscape, as well as explore the weathered architecture of the rural Midwest.

    • July 24, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    July 17 - August 28, 2020
    Reception: Friday, July 24, 5-7 PM

    The work of three artists, Jan Brandt, Krystal Lyon, and Natalie Wetzel, will envelope the gallery in a sea of color, texture, and delight. Disparate textiles such as donated clothing, pompoms, and muslin are hand stitched by artist Jan Brandt into three-dimensional hybrid assemblages and installations. Her paintings are created with the same organic, obsessive process, evoking growth and accumulation. Krystal Lyon’s fiber sculptures are made with recycled or discarded items—things that are not wanted become part of something beautiful. Through tying, crocheting, weaving, and wrapping with old clothes, yarn, and fabrics, playful and anthropomorphic shapes take form. Natalie Wetzel’s vivid abstractions are an exercise in controlled chaos. Poured, dripped, sprayed, and splattered paint intersect with deliberate lines and shapes to form playful and lively compositions.

    • July 24, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    July 17 - August 28, 2020
    Reception: Friday, July 24, 5-7 PM

    Cathy Engberg paints figures and animals at rest or play. She often scrapes away paint layers to create textured, atmospheric surfaces for her figures to inhabit.

    Mandy Roeing uses soft pastels, often mixed directly on the surface, to create vibrant landscapes and seascapes.


    • July 24, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    July 17 - August 28, 2020
    Reception: Friday, July 24, 5-7 PM

    Erica Gilliam’s depicts animals and plants in states of magical transformation. Her whimsical scenes are inspired by her passions for nature, fantasy, and mythology.

    • September 04, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    September 4 - October 16, 2020
    Reception: Friday, September 4, 5-7 PM

    "Mentor and Student" is an exhibition of work by Dennis French as well as a number of his former graduate students, including Chris Wille, Donovan Widmer, Elaine Unzicker, Jon Rutledge, Steve Hirt, Moriki Tomihara, Christy Campbell, Lilith Nielander, and Randy Reid. Pieces created during their days as students as well as recent work will highlight the lasting influence of a thriving mentor relationship.

    Dennis French is a retired university art professor, artist, designer/craftsman. He has a BFA from Arizona State University and an MFA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He was program director of the jewelry-metalsmthing discipline at Illinois State University for 27 years and retired in 2008. His work is found in many private and public collections and since retirement he has focused mainly in the design and crafting of functional work with a materials emphasis in wood. He lives and works in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois.


    • September 04, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    September 4 - October 16, 2020
    Reception: Friday, September 4, 5-7 PM

    Alfonso Gosálbez Berenguer will display a series of portraits depicting people that have influenced his life in Bloomington-Normal. With his painterly mark making and central compositions, his focus is on capturing the subject’s personality honestly.



    • September 04, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    September 4 - October 16, 2020
    Reception: Friday, September 4, 5-7 PM

    Paula McCarty’s “Women Who Painted” is a series of oil and digital portraits of historical female painters that will bring awareness to women who have been overlooked in favor of their male contemporaries. The exhibition will also create a dialogue between traditional and technological approaches to portraiture.

    • November 05, 2020
    • 5:00 PM - 8:00 PM


    November 3 - December 31, 2020
    Reception: Thursday, November 5, 5-8 PM

    Holiday Treasures is the McLean County Arts Center’s annual exhibition for the gift-giving season. More than sixty locally and nationally known artists participate, featuring painting, glass, ceramics, photography, fibers, jewelry, and seasonal gifts.




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