Cosby urges Lincoln grads to fulfill their dreams

Graduation speaker Bill Cosby, left, marches into commencemenet ceremonies in the academic procession with Professor Alvin E. Amos of the Department of Visual and Performing Arts. Amos presented Cosby for his honorary doctorate that was conferred during the program. Photo by Chris Barber

Some people, at least a dozen or so artists, are proving that, indeed, you can go home again -- at least if that home is the Chadds Ford Gallery.

The gallery is unveiling a new show May 12 called "The Return," featuring artists who helped launch the gallery and whose careers the gallery launched in return.

"I've been wanting to do this show for years," said gallery director Barbara Moore.

Fifteen of the original 17 artists whose careers began about the same time as the gallery are featured in the show.

While some, such as John McCoy, were already established when the gallery opened its doors in 1969, others such as Rick Bollinger and Ann Wyeth McCoy had their first exhibits at the Chadds Ford Gallery, said Moore. Karl Kuerner's career was also launched at the gallery, she said.

Moore loves the idea of the show because she has seen the artists mature in their creative endeavors.

"I've watched them grow. It's neat to watch [because] it doesn't always happen," she said.

She likened their beginnings to a most famous local artist.

"They were in the beginning of their growth, similar to Andy Wyeth in the 1950s right before he really caught on."

But Moore is also pleased with the way each of the artists has developed, saying they are each as true to their art as they are to themselves.

"Absolutely. They've taken control of their growth."

She said that each of the returning artists has developed his o her own unique approach and skill.

One such artist is Woody Blagg who Moore referred to as an artists' artist in that the other artists love his work.

Blagg has developed strong drawing skills and creates detailed western cowboy images.

She's also pleased with the parallel growth of the gallery with those artists. They helped give it its true identity.

"People think of this gallery as a print gallery. Not so. We're much more than that. Everyone knows about the Wyeths, but I want you to know about the others. We gave them their start and they gave us our start."

In addition to Bollinger and Kuerner, other returning artists include Anna B. McCoy, Rea Redifer, Paul Scarborough, Peter Sculthorpe and others.

The late Ann Wyeth McCoy is honored by the use of her watercolor "Christina Olson's House" for the cover of the invitation.

A portion of the sales during the show will be donated to the Chris sanderson Museum, in memory of McCoy who was an active member of the museum board.

The show runs through May 28. The Chadds Ford Gallery is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. There is no admission fee. For more information call 610-459-5510.

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