Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

October 5, 2012

Prestigious exhibit on display at local gallery

Rob Cox
Greensburg Daily News

Greensburg —  Now through Nov. 9, Art on the Square is hosting an exhibit by Indiana’s Hoosier Salon, the state’s oldest art exhibit.

In a brief phone interview Thursday afternoon, Bill Rethlake, executive director of Decatur County’s Arts and Culture Council, spoke excitedly about the exhibit.

“The Hoosier Salon exhibit is 88 years old,” Rethlake explained. “This will be Art on the Square’s 16th year hosting its pieces. This year’s Salon exhibit includes 117 works, 26 of which are currently on display right here in Greensburg.”

According to Rethlake, another 26 pieces from the Salon are on display at another Indiana location.

“The pieces tour the state the entire year,” the director said.

Asked why only 52 of the 117 Hoosier Salon works are included in the state tour, Rethlake replied, “For obvious reasons, the Hoosier Salon keeps sculptures and other, more delicate pieces on display at their gallery in Indianapolis.”

Rethlake added that the free display is staged to promote Indiana artists and to give art galleries around the state a chance to display highly sophisticated art by professional artists.

“I’m not an artist myself,” Rethlake said, “but I can see that these works are amazing; it’s simply amazing stuff. The Hoosier Salon is kind of a big deal; it’s extremely prestigious, so we encourage anyone in Greensburg or the surrounding areas with an interest in art to take advantage of the opportunity to be part of that.”

“Best of all,” he continued, “there’s no charge to view the exhibit. We do sell souvenir books for $5 each, but that’s really the only potential expense, unless you’d like to buy one of the pieces.”

To that end, Rethlake stressed, patrons are free to purchase any of the 26 Hoosier Salon works, with prices ranging from $300 to $3,000.

Although Art on the Square won’t reap any of the proceeds from souvenir-book sales, said Rethlake, “Art on the Square will receive a percentage of the sale for any Salon piece sold locally. Plus, most of our regular works by local artists are also for sale.”

The director touted local artists Judy Glore, who specializes in water colors, and Judy Richey, who works in “lots of different mediums,” as two of the more prominent local names with exhibits on sale at Art on the Square.

According to exhibit materials provided to the Daily News, the Hoosier Salon exhibit will also feature a free reception from 4 to 7 p.m., Oct. 12, at Art on the Square.

Rethlake, an accomplished pianist with 40 years experience, will provide musical entertainment during the reception.

“I play country, jazz, pop and a smidgen of classical,” he said.

Attendees to the reception will also have the opportunity to meet Sue Magargel, Art on the Square’s gallery director.

“She’s the most knowledgeable person I know regarding these artists; she’s very sharp,” Rethlake said. “She’s the daughter of Jim Spillman, who was one of Indiana’s premiere artists; anyone who knows much about Indiana art has likely heard of him. He was extremely influential, so you’d naturally expect his daughter to have a wide and vast background of knowledge about art. And she does.”

Lite refreshments will be served at the reception, with attendees encouraged to bring their own wine.

“Even though we’re not serving the wine,” Rethlake said, “we’re considering this a ‘wine reception,’ which makes it an ‘adult only’ event.’”

Rethlake added that all local and Hoosier Salon artists on display have been invited to the reception and that they’ve “occasionally been known to show up.”

He further characterized both the exhibit and the reception as a unique opportunity for any local art lover.

“You don’t want to miss either,” he said.

For more information on the Hoosier Salon Exhibit, now through Nov. 9, or the Oct. 12 reception at Art on the Square, call 663-8600.

Contact: Rob Cox at 812-663-3111 x7011.