Bella Vista Arts Council recognizes area artists

Submitted photo Janelle Redlaczyk finds inspiration in modern and contemporary art, organic shapes and the beauty of silver itself.
Submitted photo Janelle Redlaczyk finds inspiration in modern and contemporary art, organic shapes and the beauty of silver itself.

The Bella Vista Arts Council is pleased to honor three artists for the summer 2023 Artist Spotlight program: jewelry maker Janelle Redlaczyk, wildlife photographer John Huse and wood carver Jim Hershey.

The group will be recognized in a ceremony with Bella Vista Mayor John Flynn at a public reception Thursday, June 15 at 5 p.m., at Bella Vista Bar and Grill, 98 Clubhouse Dr. in Bella Vista.

The former Artist of the Month program became a quarterly program at the beginning of 2023, featuring three artists at each event, and is now called the Artist Spotlight.

Janelle Redlaczyk took her first college metalsmithing class more than 10 years after completing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting and drawing and was immediately fascinated and challenged by a new medium. She has been learning and creating since in her home studio.

"I live and work surrounded by the beauty of Northwest Arkansas," she said. "When designing jewelry, I find inspiration in modern and contemporary art, organic shapes and the beauty of silver itself as I hammer, solder and polish it.

Redlaczyk's work has been exhibited in several art galleries in Northwest Arkansas.

John Huse has been interested in wildlife and photography most of his life. He travels around the area most weekends in search of various wildlife as they are either migrating through or staying for the season in Bella Vista and surrounding areas. Occasionally he travels to more distant locations to photograph specific wildlife species, such as a March trip to Nebraska to photograph the Sandhill Crane migration.

"I have been active in the Bella Vista Photography Club since 2017 and have served as the competition chair until recently," he said.

Jim Hershey moved to Bella Vista from Colorado. He started his hobby of songbird carving 40 years ago and has developed skills that create realistic-looking birds out of basswood. His carving career began by using knives and gouges to create his birds. Twenty years later he became interested in power tools, which evolved into present day micro-motors with interchangeable bits of varying sizes.

Hershey is an exhibitor in local woodcarving shows in Bella Vista, Rogers and Mountain Home. He has participated in competitions resulting in accolades and many blue ribbons for first place winnings at the Rogers and Mountain Home woodcarving shows.

Each artist will have examples of their work for a talk about their process and experiences in developing their unique style of craftsmanship. Join us to celebrate three of Bella Vista's many creative talents.

The Bella Vista Arts Council, an advisory board to the City Council, was created by the City Council in February 2016 to help promote the arts in Bella Vista. Board members are Demara Titzer (president), J.B. Portillo and Gina Porter. The board established an Artist of the Month program in 2018, in which selected artists and their work were showcased and recognized monthly for their achievements. That program has become a quarterly recognition called Artist Spotlight, and three separate artists will be featured each quarter.

A committee will choose each quarter from qualified artists, who must be residents of Bella Vista. Events will be held in a location around the city. Submit nominations via email to [email protected].

  photo  Submitted photo Jim Hershey, songbird carver, has developed skills that create realistic-looking birds out of basswood.
 
 
  photo  Submitted photo John Huse, wildlife photographer, travels around the area most weekends in search of various wildlife.