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The Times
  • Artists featured in western Montgomery County studio tours

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  • Ten area artists will open their studios to the public on Saturday, Sept. 21, during 2013 artists’ studio tours coordinated by the Arts Factory of Montgomery County.
    Featured artisans include a jewelry-maker, a classically trained sculptor, a commercial photographer, a folk artist, a doll maker, a seamstress who hand-sews reproduction clothing, a porcelain and glass painter, a mixed-media artist who makes collage assemblages and two fine artists specializing in abstract landscape and/or architectural-style paintings.
    Tours will take place from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sept. 21, and participants are encouraged afterwards to patronize three local restaurants that have added specials to their menus in celebration of the event.
    Committee member Kathy Van Loan, an art teacher in the Canajoharie Central School District, said most of this year’s artists are located in and around Fort Plain, which sustained extensive damage from late-June flooding.
    “With the flood and everything that happened in Fort Plain, this is a way to celebrate a positive event. Hopefully people will come out and help us celebrate the arts,” she said in a news release.
    Participants include Canajoharie jewelry-maker Dontay Fowler, who crafts unique and one-of-a-kind pieces.
    Fort Plain artists include sculptor and painter Armand Gilanyi, a student of the Beaux-Arts, Paris, who graduated from the National Academy of Art in Budapest, Hungary. Gilanyi works in bronze.
    Other Fort Plain artists include Julie Takacs, who creates mixed-media collages, and doll-maker Cheryl Loadwick, who creates dolls with folk-art-inspired faces that are “born from a love of antiques, old textiles and the dolls that reside in books and museums.” Loadwick’s daughter, Emily, who creates hand-sewn, reproduction clothing from the 1740s to the 1840s, also resides in Fort Plain.
    Others hailing from the Fort Plain area are Prospect Street photographer Philip Scalia, whose works range from traditional photography to “digital deconstructions;” and Nelliston painter Steven Donovan, who is known for his abstract landscape and architectural-style paintings.
    Artists with a studio along state Route 80, in the flood-ravaged town of Minden, include Richard Pugliese, whose paintings reflect a concern “with color and the tactile quality of paint.” His works are influenced by the seasonal changes of the valley carved out by Otsquago Creek. His wife, Ginny, is a folk artist whose works are also influenced by the rural character of their home and surroundings.
    Town of St. Johnsville resident Melanie Shuster will display her opalescent porcelain and glass works. Shuster has painted in the Dresden style throughout her 40-plus year “addiction” to the craft.
    After the tour, visitors are encouraged to patronize three area restaurants that have added specials to their regular menus in celebration of the studio tours. Those eateries include Mercato Restaurant and Pizzeria, 38 West Main St. in Canajoharie, which will be open from noon to 9 p.m.; The Table restaurant, at 70 Canal St. in Fort Plain, which will feature Johnson-and-Wales-trained chef Aaron Katovitch’s own culinary masterpieces, from 4 to 10 p.m.; and Cosmo’s Bar & Grill, at 17 W. Main St. in St. Johnsville, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
    Page 2 of 2 - Tickets and maps with directions to participating artists’ studios may be purchased for $10 and will be available until 1 p.m. on Sept. 21 at the MVC Tourism Information Center at 89 Church St. in Canajoharie, the Plain Food Co-op, which recently relocated to River Street in Fort Plain or Cosmo’s Bar & Grill in St. Johnsville.

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