Past Exhibits

Karen Drosnes and Gloria Griffith in the Tea Room Gallery

Gloria Ward Griffith, Landscape Painter: Drawing and painting between the ages of six and eight began the process of developing a way to express myself artistically. Art teachers in the early years and through high school encouraged me. After completing one year as an art education major and another semester as a commercial art major, at Penn State, I regrouped, hoping to attend art school. Marriage and children followed instead. Staying involved in art during those years was difficult. But a creative outlet was found working in an advertising agency and later doing retail display work.

After the children were self sufficient I began again, studying with various art groups. Living in Baltimore provided the opportunity to study for several years with Eugene Leake, former president of the Maryland Institute of Art and a nationally known landscape artist. A family move to Tampa, Florida afforded me the greatest opportunity to work full time painting. Awards and recognition continued to encourage me. I eventually had my own studio and gallery representation. Happily my work was selling.

I am essentially self taught . I work in oils, mostly a combination of imagination and memory. No photos. The routine Sunday drive as a family through our beautiful world captured me as a young child and contributed to the need to speak to the love of the landscape as a painter.

Karen Michal Drosnes: I was raised in the small town of New Hope, Pennsylvania, what some people had called an “artist colony” but what it meant was that art was important there. My art teachers were actually artists and teachers, neighbors were artists, our little library had an enormous arts section etc. It was normal to create, always a part of my life. When I went away to college I started out in engineering/computer science but in the end came back to art. I ended up teaching elementary level art for 29 years and when I retired several years ago I starting spending a lot of time in my glass studio and taking classes from other glass artists. So much fun being a student! Glass was my medium for a long time until a few years ago when I met the mosaicist, Rachel Sager at Touchstone Center for Crafts. Rachel turned me on to the art of mosaic using natural materials and ancient techniques. She showed me how to use andamento or line as the pathway of my expression and how making the thousands of choices of tesserae build that story. I now use a variety of materials in my work: glass, shells, bones, broken pottery, found objects but I must say I am in love with stone and the connection I feel with the earth when I am using it.

Tea Room Gallery - 1st Floor

Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays 12:00 to 4:30 p.m. Or By Appointment
Mar 3
Mar 26

Artworks by William (Billy) Mills, Special Talents & Special Needs

The exhibition is a large collection of paintings by self taught artist, Billy Mills, who lived from 1918 to 2002. Mills lived in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, during his life. He was a well known local hero who lived with severe difficulties. He could not hear nor speak. However, his art works were compelling, demonstrating talent and skills in creating works representing family and community and landmarks of the area. Mills story is an inspirational and amazing story of how desire and talent supersedes difficulties. His talents helped him enable others to see the world more clearly. The story is a tribute to the human spirit and to the idea that humans have many gifts, and some are not even realized.

Mills art style varies from photorealistic to impressionistic works. The exhibition will feature works from several periods of his life and interests. He sold his works at local galleries especially the Adam and Art Gallery in Bellefonte; now closed. He lived at, and worked in the laundry room of, Centre Crest and his story is one of love found when he met Sara C Lee, whom he married and they lived together until her death in 1986.

The exhibition at the Bellefonte Art Museum will be curated by guest curators and art collectors, Doctors Gay and James Dunne. The Dunne's were friends and supporters of Mills. They featured and sold his artworks in their gallery.

This is a rare opportunity to learn about a popular artist with special needs and members of our community whose lives he affected.

Windows Gallery - 1st Floor

Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 12:00 - 4:30 p.m. OR By Appointment
Jan 6
Feb 26
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Joan Koester in the Community Gallery

Biography: Joan Koester is a lifelong Pennsylvania resident, growing up in Pittsburgh, with a few well-appreciated early years in Potter County.

Joan received a BFA (with sculpture option) from Penn State University in 1977. After graduation, her focus turned more toward painting and she began a decades-long exploration, mostly private and largely self-taught.

Joan was employed at the Centre Daily Times for 24 years, where she and desktop publishing grew up together. No doubt, graphic design, sculpture, and the constraints of weekend painting all influenced a quick style, with large, flat forms balanced within the space of the canvas.

Since “graduating” from her newspaper career, Joan has exhibited at the
Art Alliance of Central Pa., Bellefonte Museum of Art and the Images Show of CPFA. Her work is in numerous private collections.

Artist Statement: I have a love of simple forms, flat spaces and descriptive lines. I seldom look at nature to paint, but draw from my mind’s eye. My subjects are usually women, couples, and the natural world of Pennsylvania.

My paintings express consciousness…my sense of being alive and how that feels.

Community Gallery - 2nd Floor

Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays 12:00 to 4:30 p.m. Or By Appointment
Feb 3
Feb 26
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