PORTAGE | Seniors are showcasing their artistic talents again this year during the 13th annual Senior Art Fair at the Portage Public Library.
The event is sponsored by the Mayor’s Advisory Committee on Senior Services as well as Mayor James Snyder and Sue Lynch, council-at-large, and includes about 92 pieces of art by about 51 participants ages 55 and older.
“We have a wide variety from sculptures and paintings to mixed media and photographs,” said Anne Wood, librarian at Portage Public Library. “It’s all about serving seniors in our community. We have two big events: the art exhibit and the health fair (May 2).
“So often I hear them say ‘I didn’t start doing this until after I retired. Now I have the time and my house is full of my paintings, wood work … ’”
Lynch said the fair is an opportunity to spotlight the many gifted artists in the community.
“It gets better every year and I am amazed at the artists. They have such beautiful artwork,” she said. “We have some new pieces out here this year that are just extraordinary. There is a Norwegian straw art that is just beautiful and we have an exhibitor this year that did some metal art – a floral bouquet that is made out of various types of metal that is absolutely beautiful.”
Artist Natalie Keller submitted her two photographs from a trip to Russia. A retired teacher, she said a photography class and her years helping with the yearbook helped spark her artistic side.
Dick Sader’s wood work is also on display, including a memorial piece.
“Each piece is hand-cut with a scroll saw. It can take anywhere from 15 to 20 hours. Every piece is different,” he said.
Sader’s work from last year was chosen by Mayor James Snyder to help decorate the offices at City Hall, a tradition he plans to continue this year.
“Last year - my first art fair - we walked through and I saw some things and we were able to decorate some of the offices in City Hall and borrow some of the artwork. I will make another round and look for things that we can borrow and display and we will put their names on it to let people know who made it and where they are from,” he said.
“The art fair is another way to get people together. It’s amazing to see what people produce, what they make, how different groups volunteer and what everybody does to help make Portage a better place to live.”
The artwork will be on display at the library, 2665 Irving St., throughout the month of February. Those interested in purchasing pieces can contact the artists directly.
For more information, contact the library at (219) 763-1508.
To see more pictures from the fair, visit www.facebook.com/portagecommunity.