Wednesday, May 18, 2011


“Emerging from the Darke,” an apt title for the upcoming “Art At the Mill” exhibit opening Friday, May 27 at historic Bear's Mill, will feature the work of three young local artists, all recent graduates of Franklin-Monroe High School. A few ceramic and wood sculpture pieces created by their high school art teacher Scott Thayer will also be on display. An opening night artists' reception will be held from 6 p.m. till 9 p.m.; the exhibit will continue through Sunday, June 19. “We invite members of our community to help us encourage and celebrate the talents of these amazing emerging artists,” said Mill spokesperson Julie Clark, who organized the art show.

After discovering his affinity for clay when a high school freshman, Andrew Holman has continued to research and explore techniques while refining and expanding his skills. His former teacher, Scott Thayer, says that after Andrew discovered the potter's wheel, the student didn't want to stop working. “I had to keep ordering more clay for him,” said the mentor. The young artist, currently a student at Bowling Green State University, creates functional vessels as well as more sculptural pieces; his work has won numerous awards including Best of Show at BGSU's 2011 annual undergraduate exhibition, where Andrew also earned the Outstanding Undergraduate Award.

Gabriel Cottrell also works primarily with ceramics, incorporating new age shapes into his pottery while using traditional firing techniques. According to Mr. Thayer, Gabe is a very creative, very talented artist who can do it all – drawing, painting, and sculpting – but especially relishes working with clay. Gabe is currently attending Edison Community College, and has been chosen as an intern at The Arts Place in Portland, Indiana, where he will teach basic hand-building techniques to first through fifth grade children.

Described by his high school art instructor as “the most gifted natural painter I ever taught,” Vincent Saulnier continues to earn accolades for his talents. Now a student at Sinclair College, Vincent was granted a Yeck Fellowship by the Dayton Art Institute which offers college students the opportunity to mentor budding high school artists as well as to exhibit their own work in the DAI's lower gallery.

Vincent says that his paintings generally express a narrative which relates to his own life, and that his current interest lies in moving to a more impressionistic approach to his realistic work.
Porcelain, bone china, and stoneware vessels created by internationally- known ceramicist Bill Hunt, one-of-a-kind furniture pieces crafted by his wife Liz Hunt, and paintings by Belgian-born artist Micheline Daemen remain on display at Bear's Mill through May 22. “Art at the Mill” is on view during regular Mill store hours: 11 a.m. till 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays and Sundays, and Saturdays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Bear's Mill is operated by the Friends of Bear's Mill, a non-profit organization, and is located at 6450 Arcanum-Bear's Mill Road about 5 miles east of Greenville. Construction work impacting access to the bridge just north of the Mill will continue for several weeks; however, the bridge is currently open on weekdays after 3 p.m. and at all times on weekends. Access to Bear's Mill from Route 571 is not affected by work on the bridge. For more information, contact Bear's Mill at 937-548-5112 or

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