“Dave creates universally appealing contemporary clay sculptures that evoke the human form, and Jim captures poetic, evocative, enduring images that can excite the imagination or soothe the soul,” said Julie Clark, retail manager and gallery coordinator for Bear's Mill. The final show of this season at historic Bear's Mill, the exhibit opens Nov. 29 with a reception offering hors d'oeuvres and drinks from 6 p.m. till 9 p.m. The artists will speak briefly about their creations, methods, and inspiration at 7 p.m.
Jim Witmer is a local photojournalist who is currently a staff photographer/videographer for the Dayton Daily News and WHIO-TV. He has been named Ohio Photographer of the Year five times, and won the Regional Photographer of the Year award encompassing Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan, and Indiana three times. With subject matter ranging from studio still life to landscape, Witmer's work draws its strength from his unwavering focus on the nuanced simplicity of light and form. “I am always on the lookout for scenes, people or objects that I can interpret through photography,” Jim explained. “I know it may sound strange, but I often dream about photographing things in my sleep. I am comfortable with the thought that this is one of my callings in life,” he concluded.
Potter David Kirchner has been working exclusively in clay since 1984; he teaches numerous classes at Dayton-area art centers and the University of Dayton, and has run his own studio/gallery in downtown Dayton for the past nine years. He says that many of his creations come from ideas generated by the materials and processes he uses. “A glaze may need a bowl to show off the color; I think of what the finished work will be and what steps I need to get there,” Dave stated. His current work includes ceramic sculptures with simplified human/organic forms, some of which are straightforward while others are abstract.
The work of painter, potter, and printmaker Doug Fiely, Assistant Professor of Art at Defiance College, and blown glass artist Brent Cole, who has held the lead faculty position for Ball State University's glass program since 2010, will remain on view at Bear's Mill through Nov. 24. “Art At the Mill” has received funding from the Ami McClurkin Community Fund, held by the HOPE Foundation of Darke County, and is also supported by Darke County Endowment for the Arts. Art exhibits may be viewed during regular Mill store hours, 11 a.m. till 5 p.m. daily. Historic Bear's Mill is owned and operated by Friends of Bear's Mill, a non-profit organization, and is located at 6450 Arcanum-Bear's Mill Road about five miles east of Greenville. For more information, contact Bear's Mill at 548-5112 or www.bearsmill.com.