Barn Colony Artists of Decatur to be guest exhibitors in Logan County Arts July Art Show

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[July 11, 2017]   LINCOLN - Decatur’s Barn Colony Artists are featured in the July 13-August 5 exhibit by Logan County Arts and the Lincoln Art Institute. The show will debut with a reception from 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 13, at the Lincoln Art Institute, 112 S. McLean St, Lincoln.

After the initial reception, the gallery is open on Saturdays and Sundays from 1:00-4:00 p.m. July 15-August 5. Additional viewing times may be arranged by calling the Lincoln Art Institute at (217) 651-8355.

The display of 80 works of art include watercolor and oil paintings, multi-media, drawings, and photography from Decatur artists Ann Brunson, Phil Cooling, Miguel Durban, Shirley Fahs, Stephen Gardner, Ken Moser, Dianne Spaniol, and Jim Spaniol. Each artist is showing multiple works, most of which are available for purchase.

Highlights about each of these award-winning artists include:

Ann Brunson has been interested in art from a young age saying, “As a kid I was always drawing or making paper dolls.” In this show, she is featuring a colored drawing titled Cat 1. Although her family is dog owners, Brunson often includes a cat in her altered reality works featuring diagonals, strong designs, and multiple colors.

Phil Cooling is creative with a variety of media including acrylic, oils, and wood from realistic to abstract viewpoints. Cooling says, “I have been trying to evoke a thought or emotion with my paintings. “Seeking” is a perfect example of what I was looking to accomplish. Just stand back and let your mind wander as you look at it. I’m not going to tell you what you might see, that’s for you and you alone.” This piece was also created without using a paint brush. Cooling poses the question, can you guess what tool was used?

Miguel Durban took up drawing, then painting with oils and using other media including charcoal. Durban says, “I paint almost every day, often from photos or sometimes just from my imagination.” His featured work, done with oil and a palette knife, is titled Sunny Day at the Creek. This view of nature is favored by Durban because of its combination of colors and the form of the trees.

Shirley Fahs is showing water colors, drawings, and a unique collage made of match covers and acrylic titled The Fire Within. Fahs contacted friends who contributed match covers featuring long-gone restaurants like Elam’s root beer stand, The Blue Mill, and Shenanigans. This one-of-a-kind piece also includes an historical political cover, “Re-elect Hosapple”, a former Macon County Sheriff.

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Stephen Gardner, a college student, joined BCA a couple years ago after meeting members at an art show. He works with acrylics on canvas, many with a different-world look. His favorite work for this show is titled Flowers, and is a close-up view of a flower cluster. Gardner who has been interested in art all of his life says, “Some of my earliest memories are drawing silly pictures with Crayola markers.”

Ken Moser launched into art by taking a watercolor workshop by Rob O’Dell. Moser also paints with gauache (opaque watercolors), oils, and acrylic. His favorite for this show is a watercolor of realistic wisteria blossoms fading to more impressionistic leaves and background, a subject from his own yard.

Dianne and Jim Spaniol often return from photo shoots with totally different perspectives in their 10 years of sharing photography as a hobby. Dianne Spaniol’s favorite for the July show is called Architecture. This nighttime shot of the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge, which crosses Nashville’s Cumberland River, draws the viewer deeper into the bridge and highlights often overlooked colors reflected upward from Music City’s neon lights.

Jim Spaniol is featuring colorful guitars in a photo taken at a street market in San Antonio, TX. He says, “Since I play the guitar, these caught my attention. I love this colorful form of my favorite instrument.”

Some BCA artists started or returned to art after retirement including Ann Brunson who said art took a backseat to her career, but she picked it up after retirement when she joined Barn Colony Artists (BCA).

Ken Moser says, “I retired from work and decided to learn how to create artwork.”

Miguel Durban, who took up drawing at age 54 in his homeland, Spain, credits BCA’s weekly instructional meetings with guiding him forward.

Information on the next exhibit is available at the Barn Colony opening. For more information about the Barn Colony Artists, started in 1939, email

The August exhibit of works by LCA members is themed “Color Me Blue.” Non-members may also show artworks in this exhibit by paying a small display fee. Anyone interested in participating may contact Moses Pinkerton or Mitch Douglas (630-890-1318) for more information.

[Dianne Spaniol]

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