artNotes from Hyde House: Heroines and Heroes at artCentral    

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To carry on when faced with unexpected challenges, this is an identifying attribute of the heroic. To be in the presence of heroic persons is uplifting and inspiring. Just so was the Opening Reception of artCentral’s newest exhibition, “p-i-e-c-e-d TOGETHER”, showcasing the mixed media creations of Lori Marble and Jo Mueller along with the fundraising SMALL WORKS | GREAT WONDERS Silent Auction featuring artworks on 5×7 canvases donated by 48 artCentral artists—heroines and heroes one and all.

Lori and Jo, as their powerfully beautiful art attests, are a duality of heroines—each seasoned with her own challenges—each a Wonder Woman imbued with special creative powers as recognized by all those who attended their celebratory Opening. Stormy weather had been predicted for their special occasion, and yet as though all the forces of nature were aligning with them and their art, from porch through all the house and out onto the patio, the doors opened to welcome the exquisite loveliness of a perfect early autumn evening.

Steadily the folks flowed in. Again and again art was admired. Arty conversations wafted about in every gallery. Observations were made and one and another and then another works were chosen and purchased.  What joy for me to be in service to sharing Lori’s and Jo’s heroic ways of creating and living! I am honored.

Personally I am quite familiar with heroic ways, for I live with my own super hero. After waking each morning at 5:04, while I do my yoga practice, my hero of a husband David goes downstairs to tend our furries and make and carry up our coffee and fruit and then our breakfast, too, before commuting off to his full-time day job as a front line essential worker in food production at Ajinomoto.

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For the two weeks prior to the “p-i-e-c-e-d TOGETHER” and Silent Auction opening, after working eight hours at his “regular” job, as artCentral’s prepitor (art handler), David segued to arCentral, his “home away from home”, to help me make ready for the exhibition and auction. Yes, Hyde House is David’s second home and artCentral is his second job! A lifelong artist himself, for our non-profit arts community David generously gives the talents and expertise he cultivated over fifteen years as a gallery owner in Kansas City. As an artCentral volunteer he not only heavy lifts, he also skillfully takes on the tasks needed to care for Hyde House and prepare for every event. I could not do my job without him. Creating a gallery installation with David is pure bliss. David is my super hero!

David’s standing modestly, quietly on the sidelines as the reception comments were offered, made the evening so right, especially as another super hero stood strong and brave just paces away. Yes, in the absence of his artist wife, Jo Mueller, Don Ayers, her supportive, loving husband of thirty-three years, courageously was present for both of them. Don is a super hero supreme! While bearing the grief of Jo’s passing, he graciously said “yes” when asked to share with all of us the art in the collection of her works she left behind with him. We are so very grateful to Don and so admiring of his courage as he carries on in Jo’s absence.

My heartfelt gratitude goes out to David and to Don and to all those who gave their heroic efforts to create and stage “p-i-e-c-e-d TOGETHER”: Sharon and Lance Beshore, artCentral Sustaining Members who graciously provided much appreciated special support; Old Missouri Bank, the exhibition underwriter; Betsy Flanigan (artCentral’s board president and reception impresario) and Bren Flanigan (host extraordinaire); Lori Bigley (always adept in facilitating sales) and David Bigley (special events greeter of guests); Maddie Capps (board secretary, excellent photographer and adept sales assistant); and Sierra Hicks (intern attending to preparation details). I am especially grateful for all the artCentral members, patrons and guests who came to make this special event a gloriously shining success.

In Hyde House through December 4, 2021, “p-i-e-c-e-d TOGETHER” and the SMALL WORKS | GREAT WONDERS Silent Auction will continue through their Closing Celebration on Saturday, December 4, 6:00-8:00 p.m. The Silent Auction bidding ends at 7:00 p.m.

October, November and December Weekend Gallery Hours are each Friday and Saturday from 12:00 to 5:00 p.m. with CDC protocols practiced at artCentral. Face masks and social distancing are required for everyone entering Hyde House. Please help us heroically keep each other safe and healthy and ready for the coming season of celebrations!

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