MOUNT VERNON — The Ohio Eastern Star Home held its premiere art gallery opening on Thursday, featuring 22 resident artist’s work for family, friends and guests.
“We started during the art classes and they’ve been so well received that they continue to grow each month,” said Ann Flynn, marketing director for OES. “We work in soft pastels which is a very forgiving medium. It’s wonderful that at the end of a two-hour class they come out with a framed piece of art.”
Flynn, who teaches the art classes, said she has found the activity to be very therapeutic for the residents.
“Most have never done art before, so when they come to these classes it gives them a great sense of satisfaction when they leave with that framed piece of art in their hands,” said Flynn.
Local artist, Katie McClusky, a recent graduate of Loma Linda University with a master’s in counseling and a bachelor’s degree in fine art in art education from Southern Adventist University, has volunteered with the art program at OES for several weeks and said she greatly enjoys working with the residents.
“It was nice working with the residents and listening to all their stories,” said McClusky.
McClusky’s artwork is also on display.
“I used to draw when I was a kid and even while I was in high school,” said Nellie Colgin, 92-year-old resident of OES.
One of Colgin’s pieces in the exhibit is a chalk drawing of a beach with a palm tree overlooking the ocean. “I just love to draw,” she said.
A former writer, Sophia Shane, always wanted to learn how to draw and was grateful for the opportunity to learn to draw with chalk pastels. Her drawing of a Ohio State University pink teddy bear was displayed in the gallery.
“I think [the gallery] was a wonderful idea,” said Shane. “I believe the Lord gives us gifts that we don’t even know are there. Even though I’m not a professional or anything like that, seeing other people smile as they hold my picture — that is a gift in itself.”
Max Winters, resident artist, said his favorite painting was of a covered bridge.
“I really enjoyed doing that painting,” he said.
Residents’ art will continued to be displayed at OES with each month offering different pieces.