“Art At the Mill” will showcase the contemporary metal sculpture of Jeff Rutledge along with colorful contemporary prints created by former Greenville resident Molly Mote from Friday, June 28 through Sunday, July 21. The exhibit at historic Bear’s Mill opens with a Friday evening artists’ reception from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m.; light hors d’oeuvres and wine will be served. The artists will speak briefly at 7 p.m., outlining their personal histories and revealing their motivations and goals.
“We are so excited to be featuring these unique and engaging artists,” said Julie Clark, retail manager and gallery coordinator for Bear’s Mill. “Jeff’s exuberant creativity is well-known throughout the region and beyond, and of course we’ve watched Molly’s talents expand and grow as she continues through the years to produce playful and intriguing work,” Mrs. Clark stated.
Sculptor Jeff Rutledge began his formal training at Wright State University, graduating Magna Cum Laude in 1975, and earned his MFA from the University of Cincinnati. The Dayton resident says that he enjoys working in steel because of its plasticity and enduring nature. “I consider my sculptures to be three-dimensional poems – visual meditations,” the artist explained. His work is often abstract and whimsical, with parts that move and can be changed to create different forms. Mr. Rutledge states that many of his pieces are meant to be left outdoors where they change with the seasons, offering opportunity for new aesthetic discoveries as the environment leaves its impact upon the original artistic form.
Molly Mote has been immersed in art throughout her entire life; she began giving art lessons when she was only 15 years old, and is currently an elementary art teacher in Indianapolis where she now resides. Molly attended the Chicago Art Institute, then moved on to Herron School of Art where she earned her degree in printmaking. “As an artist, I have grown from teaching others,” Molly says. “”Being an art teacher influences my art, and reciprocally my experience with my own personal work influences my teaching,” she concluded. Molly states that the core of her artwork centers around the interpretation of objects found in our everyday life and landscape through the use of a nostalgic palette and diverse arrangement of space.
One of a kind hand-pulled prints by Bellbrook resident Andrea Starkey plus wood-fired clay vessels created by Patrick Rademaker of Louisville, Kentucky remain on display at Bear’s Mill through June 23. “Art At the Mill” has received funding from the Ami McClurkin Community Fund, held by the HOPE Foundation of Darke County, and is also supported by Darke County Endowment for the Arts. The art exhibit is on view during regular Mill store hours, 11 a.m. till 5 p.m. daily. Historic Bear’s Mill is operated by Friends of Bear’s Mill, a non-profit organization, and is located at 6450 Arcanum-Bear’s Mill Road about 5 miles east of Greenville. For more information, contact Bear’s Mill at 937-548-5112 or www.bearsmill.com.