Art Tour puts spotlight
on areas creative talent
in Switzerland, Ohio counties
to display, sell their artwork during event
Helen E. McKinney
Indiana Edition Cover
(April 2010) Rick Starker has a talent for
taking a lifeless scrap of wood and breathing life into it. The end
result is a piece of furniture that has been painstakingly crafted into
a useful, aesthetically pleasing object.
Starker learned a lot of what he knows from his mentor, Denver Markland,
a noted woodworker and teacher. The rest of his woodworking knowledge
he acquired through experience.
From his shop in Vevay, Ind., Starker, 52, works 16-hour days to craft
commissioned pieces and complete antique repairs. In addition to his
job as a hotel manager, woodworking is as full-time a job as you
can get for me he said.
Starker is from Lawrenceburg, Ind., and has lived in Switzerland County
for the last 40 years. The fact that his woodwork is totally customer
designed makes it appealing to a wide variety of people, said
He uses real hardwoods and no manufactured materials. His pieces are
made out of woods such as walnut, cherry, oak and popular. He can stain
or paint a piece of furniture when requested.
Starker said he got hooked on woodworking when he bought his own place
and began building furniture for it. Others saw his work and commissioned
him to do various pieces for them. Eventually, he took his woodworking
to a professional level.
Starker is just one of 40 artists scheduled to participate in the Creative
Spaces Rural Places Studio Art Tour. This free event will take place
from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, April 24-25, in Switzerland
and Ohio counties in southeastern Indiana.
Approximately 31 locations are on the tour, showcasing a variety of
mediums, including paint, glass, sculpture, basket making, fiber, wood,
steel and photography. Participating artists will have their artwork
available for sale.
24-25 in Switzerland and Ohio counties in southeastern Indiana
10 a.m. - 6 p.m. each day
40 artists to show and sell their work at their studios.
Galleries and shops also feature their work.
Tour Headquarters: Switzerland County Welcome Center, 128
W. Main St., Vevay; Rising Sun-Ohio County CVB, 120 Main St.,
Information: 1-800-435-5688 (Vevay) or 1-888-776-4786 (Rising
During last years Studio Tour, Starker crafted a
grandfather clock out of cedar so that guests could see him working
in a natural environment. The year before that, Starker rebuilt a
200-year-old spinning wheel that had been in the same family for 200
years. The family had it shipped overseas from Holland, he said.
The tour is in its third year, according to Kendal Miller, public relations
spokesperson for Switzerland County Tourism. Local, as well as
out-of-state art lovers, visit us during the event.
In talking with the participating artists, one will learn that many
of them are not originally from Switzerland or Ohio counties, some not
even from the state. This is an added benefit to those taking
the tour, said Miller. Not only will our guests have the
opportunity to experience an artists artistic influences
from the combination of what they learned in their past experiences
and locales, but what inspires them now while living in Indiana.
A good example is Tony Catanzaro, who is originally from Brooklyn, N.Y.
A former engineer, he came to the area because of work and ended up
staying, something that was not planned, he said.
Catanzaro is drawn to the river and can always be found working in his
outdoor studio and sculpture garden. He sculpts artwork from recycled
metal, incorporating a lot of wood and stone in his pieces. Many times
he finds his metal in or along the river or people give him metal to
environment is integral to many of the artists works."
David Attaway, Switzerland County CVB director
Farmers often donate old machinery they no longer need
and he has even crafted artwork from old barges found in the river.
The materials I use are pretty old, said Catanzaro, a fact
that makes his work unique in itself.
The largest piece he ever sculptured was 13 feet tall. All of his pieces
can be placed inside or outside. I always wanted to sculpt,
said Catanzaro, 61.
He knows a piece is finished when it just feels good. He
doesnt use any sketches, relying only on the visual image in his
head when it comes to a particular project.
He automatically knows what to do when he finds a piece of material.
The material draws me into what it will become, he said.
The Studio Tour is a great opportunity for artists to not only
promote their work but to inspire others in their particular field of
expertise, said Miller. Artists will appear on site at their studios,
an art center, gallery or hosting business.
There have been varying forms of studio tours around for awhile,
said David Attaway, executive director for Switzerland County Tourism.
But ours is unique in the way it is featured. The environment
is integral to many of the artists works.
The Switzerland and Ohio County Tourism Departments received a grant
to create and enhance a website for this tour, said Attaway. A new interactive
map is on the website. Under the umbrella of the Ohio County Tourism,
the project received a $10,000 grant from the Indiana Artisans.
by Don Ward
Farnsley paints and creates
ceramics at her studio at
301 W. Market St. in Vevay.
Both Attaway and Sherry Timms, executive director of Rising
Sun-Ohio County Tourism, worked together before on assembling the Southeast
Wine Trail. The counties teamed again to produce this Studio Tour, which
Attaway said has been successful enough in the past to keep building,
while people keep coming back for it.
A contest will be held during the tour awarding a Stay n
Play Package, featuring a two-day, one night stay and gift and
dinner discount through the Creative Spaces Rural Places Art Tour website.
A second contest will award a Lodging Package that includes
a two-night stay with the second night half off at select Bed and Breakfasts
and Inns, plus $30 in Artist Bucks to be used toward the
purchase of artwork along the tour.
by Don Ward
and operates Luhrs
Studio on the
third floor of the
building located at
120 W. Main St., Vevay.
Some of the participating artists are located along the
Ohio River Scenic Byway, while others are located in the downtown areas
of Rising Sun or Vevay. Visitors will be given the chance to enjoy the
beauty of the area while on the tour.
This is a wonderful way to see what hidden treasures are waiting
to be discovered in both our talented artists and our two counties,
There are several Indiana Artisans on the Tour. To be selected
as an Indiana Artisan is a wonderful honor, Miller said. One is
Jerry Wallin of Wallin Forge. Wallin was a noted Kentucky Artisan before
moving to Indiana. He is a very significant artist that bridges
the river for us, said Attaway.
Ann Farnsley is another artist that has customers and collectors from
Indiana and Kentucky. Farnsley grew up in old Louisville and moved to
southern Indiana in 1970. Shes been painting seriously for the
last 45 years.
Farnsley works in different mediums, mostly painting and ceramics. This
past winter I did a series of palette knife paintings using oils, so
Ill be featuring them on the tour, she said.
Over the years, she has developed a personal style she labels fantasy
art. Farnsley describes this artwork as childlike images,
floating animals and spacescape environments. During the tour,
shell be working outside at her easel on a new fantasy painting.
The Creative Spaces Tour and the Original Oldham Studio Tour and
Art Sale are very similar, said Farnsley, who has participated
in both studio tours. She shared the brochure from the first Oldham
Studio Tour with Angie Satterfield, Attaways assistant and retail
coordinator of tourism-operated stores in Switzerland County. Satterfield
was confident that this could be done in Indiana, so our tour
with both Switzerland and Ohio Counties was born, said Farnsley.
courtesy of Kendal R. Miller
Starker is a noted woodworker
who creates his masterpieces
at his home studio, located at
111 Cheapside St. in Vevay.
Though our tour is not exactly the same, we thought
it was a perfect idea, said Timms.
By partnering with Switzerland County, a more diverse group of people
will be represented on the tour, said Timms. She said there are some
interesting folks in Ohio County that craft guitars, harps, kayaks,
dolls, eclectic sculptures and we have a lot of painters here.
It is an interesting group of artists and craftspeople.
The tour presents many economic and personal opportunities for
the artists, Timms said. Many stops will have multiple artists
present, such as the Pendleton Art Center. Because of this, sometimes
one day on the tour is not enough time to see everything, she said.
Its a nice way to spend a weekend, said Timms. People
are always surprised by how interesting it was.
For artists like Farnsley, the studio tour is a great tool for seeing
old friends, meeting new people and sharing my artwork with them. I
also like the camaraderie and interaction with other artists.
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