Montgomery County Studio Tour!! In Pottstown!!!

The first Montgomery County Studio Tour will take place on Saturday June 10, 2017 from 10 AM to 6 PM, and Sunday June 11, 2017 from 11 AM to 5 PM.

The Montgomery County Studio Tour was created to promote regional artists and contribute to the cultural vitality of Montgomery County, by presenting original and diverse artwork in creative working studio settings.  54 artists in different mediums such as painting, sculpture, jewelry, photography, clay, glass, paper and fiber will showcase their work in 20 studios across Montgomery County.  Many studios on the Tour will feature works-in-progress and artist demonstrations.

We invite art enthusiasts and the curious to experience a rare glimpse into the variety of outstanding art of Montgomery County as these professional artists exhibit their work during this unique and intimate two-day event.  All of the artists will be on hand to talk about their work and meet buyers and browsers alike.  Whether this is your first time buying art or you are a seasoned collector, this tour has something for everyone, in a wide range of mediums and prices.

Visitors are encouraged to design their own self-guided tour with the catalogue and map, which can be downloaded from www.MontgomeryCountyStudioTour.com. You can start with the studio closest to you, or anywhere you like, by using the convenient map and website.

We are continuing the “County Collector Series” well-known from the Chester County Studio Tour.  This is an opportunity to collect an original framed 6” x 6” piece of art for the special pricing of $75.  Our two-dimensional artists have created an original work of art in a simple and elegant 6” x 6” frame, and our three-dimensional artists have also created special pieces for this Collector Series.  A photo of each work in this series is included in our catalogue and may also be seen on the website.

This first Montgomery County Studio Tour was created by Jeff Schaller, painter and tour organizer, on the same model as his well received and extremely successful Chester County Studio Tour, which is in its 8th year.

Free and open to the public.  Please visit website www.montgomerycountystudiotour.com for map, artists and studio listings and for catalogue.  Handicapped accessible studios are marked on the studio pages in the catalogue and on the website. Please email info@countystudiotour.com or call 610.942.9629 for further information.

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Montgomery County Community College To Host ‘Meet The Artists’ Reception For ‘Visions’ Art Exhibition June 1

Pottstown, Pa.—Montgomery County Community College will host a “Meet the Artists” reception for the “Visions” art exhibition on Sunday, June 1, 1-3 p.m. at the Fine Arts Gallery, North Hall, 16 High Street, Pottstown. The exhibition features the artwork of four area artists: Phil Smith of Schwenksville, Jim Hendricks of Pottstown, Julie Longacre of Barto, and Sonya Moyer of Earl Township.

The exhibit opened May 12 and will continue through June 6. Both the exhibition and reception are free and open to the public.  Longacre’s Dairy will serve homemade-style ice cream at the reception. Everyone is welcome.

“Entitled ‘Visions’ this exhibition reflects how each of us, with our own separate working styles and mediums, has been united by the common idea of strong personal visual expressions,” says Phil Smith.

Phil Smith:  Metal sculpture by Phil Smith, Norristown.

Phil Smith: Metal sculpture by Phil Smith, Norristown.

As a metal sculptor, Smith likes to create sculptures as visual recordings of his life and how his life has been involved with these things. His sculptures incorporate weathered, used objects, such as old tools, machine parts and discarded metal objects. “The sculptures are nearly all the assembly of the brazed and welded metal parts coming together to express an idea based on my perception(s) of life,” he notes in his artist statement.

Smith, now retired, taught Fine Arts in the Norristown Area High School for 33.5 years, and his sculptures have appeared in numerous local galleries and exhibitions. He earned a bachelor’s degree and Master of Science degree in Education from Millersville University and a second master’s degree in education from Marywood College in Scranton.  Additionally, he has taken courses at Temple University/Tyler School of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, as well as other area arts centers, and has an associate’s degree in Art from Montgomery County Community College.

Stone/wood sculptor Jim Hendricks is a former student of Smith’s at Norristown Area High School in 1978-1980. The two sculptors have maintained their friendship throughout the years and are looking forward to exhibiting their work together at the gallery.

Jim Hendricks:  Stone sculpture by Jim Hendricks, Pottstown.

Jim Hendricks: Stone sculpture by Jim Hendricks, Pottstown.

Hendricks has always been inspired by the human form and his work is influenced by a range of work from the German expressionists to Aztec and Mayan carving and from the American realists of the Works Progress Administration to the Medieval and Gothic carvers, according to his artist statement. “I believe that by exaggerating, enlarging, stretching and distorting the forms of the human figure, I can express powerful emotions and ideas to the viewer through the sculpture,” he says.

A native of Norristown, Hendricks graduated from the University of the Arts in 1984 and helped to fabricate sculptures for the Treehouse exhibit at the Philadelphia Zoo. He then worked as a studio assistant on government-commissioned monuments in Washington, D.C. He currently has a studio in Pottstown.

Like Smith and Hendricks, artists and sisters Julie Longacre and Sonya Moyer look forward to sharing gallery space at the Fine Arts Center, too.

Julia Longacre, a Berks County native, earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at Bethany College, Lindsborg, Kansas.  She first exhibited her local landscape paintings in 1971 at the Boyertown Historical Society, launching her successful career in fine art. Throughout her career, Longacre has held numerous solo exhibitions locally, regionally and as far as Nova Scotia, Canada, and garnered many awards and accolades.

Julie Longacre:  “Rows into Winter” by Julie Longacre, Barto.

Julie Longacre: “Rows into Winter” by Julie Longacre, Barto.

Proficient in any medium, from watercolor, oil or acrylic, Longacre is well-known for her landscapes and buildings of the rural countryside of southeastern Pennsylvania. Her love of painting and joy of writing has been an integral part of Berks County community for the last 40-plus years.

Artist/photographer Moyer lives in an 1838 restored stone farmhouse, where she enjoys capturing the bucolic landscape and “workings” of the farm through her camera lens. She credits her sister for encouraging her to exhibit her photographs and to truly “see” and appreciate the world around her.

I try to capture the joy and wonder, the quietness and beauty of nature, a small frame of perfection in an imperfect world. So many times, these little scenes are just fleeting moments and are gone before you fully appreciate them. Sometimes it just takes my breath away, that I am lucky enough to see and experience these moments and I want to share it with others so that they, too, can see, feel, enjoy and reflect on them,” says Moyer.

The gallery is open Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m.-9:30 p.m. and Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Sonya Moyer:  Photography by Sonya Moyer, Earl Township.

Sonya Moyer: Photography by Sonya Moyer, Earl Township.

For more information about the exhibition, contact Montgomery County Community College Galleries Director Holly Cairns at 215-619-7349 or hcairns@mc3.edu

For information and photographs of exhibitions and participating artists, friend us on Facebook/DestinationArts.

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