MOUNT VERNON — Artwork in a variety of mediums is now available in downtown Mount Vernon. Kudos, an artists’ co-op located at 15 N. Main St., opened March 1 featuring artwork from a number of local artisans.
The brainchild of Marsha Ernst, Kudos offers an opportunity to see a variety of art in one local setting.
“We wanted a venue for local artists to sell their artwork,” said Ernst. “With Mount Vernon being a small town, there is not a lot of opportunity to view fine artwork. But it is growing.”
Ernst’s husband and son are both artists, and she is a member of the Knox County Art League. Taking part in art shows and seeing how successful they were, she got the idea of opening an artists’ co-op here in Mount Vernon. Items featured at the gallery include antiques, blown glass, fiber and yarn, jewelry, metal, paintings, paper, pottery, silk screen, soap, stained glass and wood.
There are currently 20 individuals with items on display, with 16 of the artists living in Knox County. Three others are from elsewhere in Ohio, and one is from Virginia. Ernst added that there is also a waiting list of artists wishing to display their works at Kudos.
“I love the idea of art in a concentrated area,” said Ernst. A few independent art studios can be found in downtown Mount Vernon, including The Red Z Gallery which is also located on North Main Street between Public Square and West Chestnut Street — the “short north.”
“We complement each other,” said Ernst, telling how they often refer visitors to other art galleries, and visa versa. “When people come in, we send them on to others.”
Kudos will be open from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. Participating artists will volunteer their time in staffing the gallery. “This is a way of giving back to the community,” said Ernst. They will all share in the expenses of maintaining the gallery, and the artists keep 100 percent of the profits from sales. “We just want to support the arts locally,” she said.
A special “First Friday” edition is also offered each month where the gallery will be open from 6 to 9:30 p.m. on the first Friday of the month.
A grand opening celebration is planned from 6 to 9:30 p.m. this evening.
Visitors are encouraged to come visit the gallery as participating artists will be on hand to discuss their artwork. Refreshments will be served.
“This should be a wonderful addition to Mount Vernon,” said Ernst who said artists are very excited about the gallery and have donated numerous hours of work in getting the gallery opened.
“It exceeded my expectations,” she said.