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Home Is Where the Art Is

Celebrating the Past, Present and Future of Art in Our Community

Article by Bill Furbee

Photography by Matthew J Capps Business Image Services

Originally published in Loveland Lifestyle

“We all need beauty and creativity in our lives—and every community benefits from a strong arts culture,” says Loveland artist Johanna Kremer. “It’s what brings joy to the human spirit.”

Fortunately, Loveland is in the midst of nothing less than a full-blown arts renaissance—one which actively celebrates the groundbreaking work of those who have come before, as well as spotlighting contemporary and up-and-coming artists as well.

Johanna seconds that sentiment.

“There’s a lot of art history here,” she affirms. “And a whole lot of tremendously talented artists. It’s an integral part of who we are.”

Gallery Veronique
GalleryVeronique.com | 11364 Montgomery Rd, Cincinnati

At Gallery Veronique, art collectors and enthusiasts are able to browse (and buy) curated pieces that have been delivered here from literally every corner of the world. It’s what makes this local shop so unique—the wealth of worldwide talent and mediums, right in your own backyard. Additionally, the gallery offers expert art handling and installation.

That doesn’t mean that customers can’t choose local, as well—owner Veronique Hammons notes her clients’ devotion to homegrown artists, and its subsequent impact on the community. “Communities with thriving art thrive in other ways, too,” she notes. “Art is the best way to uplift yourself!”

William Schickel Gallery
WilliamSchickelGallery.com | 112 S. Riverside Ave, Loveland

From 1947 until his passing in 2009, William Schickel lived with his wife Mary Frei on a sprawling Loveland farm. While there, he produced a number of paintings, sculptures, stained glass and other notable works.

The world soon took note—he won an award for his renovation of Kentucky’s Abbey of Gethsemani. He won the American Institute Architects Gold Medal Award in 1968. And his downtown Cincinnati wall mural, “Eighty Foot Love Letter to the Queen,” remains highly regarded.

Today, William’s works can be found in a number of private collections and museums—including the Brooklyn and the Vatican museums. Right here in Loveland, his work can still be enjoyed at his namesake gallery, curated by his son.

Loveland Art Studios on Main
StudiosOnMain.com | 529 Main St, Loveland

One historic brick structure on Main Street has served Loveland in myriad ways for decades—in its current profession, it continues to bring neighbors together to connect and create.

“The studios have a great vibe,” Johanna says—she’s one of many artists who work inside the 30,000-square-foot building.

For decades, the site was home to West Loveland Elementary School; then it was home to the Clifton Shirt Factory beginning around 1948. Now—and for the past 15+ years—the historic Loveland Art Studios building has been home to more than 30 artists, including Cindy and Bob Kessler, Tom Post, Monica Achberger, Jon Gilcher and Lynda Gilcher-Braunstein … potters, bead makers, stained glass specialists, painters, jewelers and fiber artists alike.

Shawn and Chandra Custis purchased the building in 2005, initially planning to convert the space into an eclectic antique mall. That was before artist Mary Karg convinced them to envision the building as a collection of artist studios and galleries. The idea stuck.

Visitors enter the Studios on Main through a colorful foyer, and soon make their way through a gallery space—which presents resident artwork and also serves as a gathering spot. From there, winding hallways and staircases direct guests toward individual artist studios and displays.

“The diversity of talented artists is inspiring—we’ve become a more close-knit community over the years,” Johanna reports. “We laugh a lot. We celebrate each other’s achievements. We help each other be better artists. And it’s a fun place to be … you don’t feel alone!”

Nancy Ford Cones Photography Exhibit
LovelandMuseum.org | 201 Riverside Ave, Loveland

The groundbreaking work of Nancy Ford Cones has been enjoyed far and wide—she’s nationally recognized for her photography … in fact, from 1898 through the 1930s, her work could be seen in a number of magazines published across the country. All the while, it was nothing less than everyday life in Loveland that she was documenting, utilizing friends and neighbors as models for her photography.

At the Loveland Museum Center, there’s an exhibit currently dedicated to her legacy. That collection displays a rotating selection of over a thousand artifacts—photographic prints, glass plates, correspondence, cameras and more. Jenny Shives, Loveland Museum Center curator, says their collection of 500+ photographic plates and more than 1,000 images is a conservative estimate—it makes sense that an exhibit such as this is routinely updated for visitors.

Jenny proudly shares that, today, a new generation is discovering Cones’ work and helping us all to reconsider this amazing artist’s place in history. “For a long time, she was labeled a pictorialist,” Jenny says. “But there’s a lot more to her than that.”

Art House II
DysonPaintings.info| 430 W. Loveland Ave, Loveland

Deirdre Dyson opened her first Loveland studio—Art House—in 1980 as a gallery, art supply and framing store, with classes offered on the side. That bode well for the next 10 years, while she taught art at Loveland High School.

Today, Art House II—Deirdre’s current studio/gallery—displays more than 200 pieces. “When people visit my studio for the first time, they usually give me a ‘wow!’” she says. “They’re struck by my use of bold, vibrant color, which I use to capture atmosphere and mood.”

Deirdre’s love of community has led to her serving as president/board member of Loveland Arts Council for the last 10 years—she’s also a founding member of the Loveland Stage Company, as well as founder/co-founder of Loveland Art Show, Paint the Town, Music in the Park, Christmas in Loveland, and Art League of Loveland.

“I’m inspired by natural forms of trees, flowers, landscapes and seasons,” Deirdre says. “As well as buildings and scenes from both local landmarks and on painting trips through the U.S. and abroad.”

“Communities with thriving art thrive in other ways, too ... art is the best way to uplift yourself!”

“We all need beauty and creativity in our lives—and every community benefits from a strong arts culture ... it’s what brings joy to the human spirit.”

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