Commercial art gallery

C-Art, the seasonal public art exhibition comes to Commercial Street

If you’ve visited Commercial Street recently, you may have noticed mysterious black banners – with an abstract eyeball and the date September 18 – hanging from lampposts. And after two years of preparations, the event behind the banner is finally revealed.

The banners were hung as a teaser campaign for C-Art, a new ongoing art event taking place this fall on Commercial Street. The first free and family event will take place on Sunday, September 18 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Twenty Springfield artists are participating in the event, showcasing their work at 14 different Commercial Street businesses:

  • Randy Bacon, Heidi Herman and John Rutkowski at the Randy Bacon Photography Studio and Gallery
  • Victoria Henderson at Big Momma
  • Rashod Taylor at Q Enoteca
  • Kate Baird at Eurasia
  • Kathleen Day at the Historic Fire Station
  • JM Warren and Annie Campbell at Skin Wax Ink
  • Debra McCamish at The Coven
  • Mariah Howard at the GLO Center
  • Michelle Houghton and Belinda Jensen Wood at the light box
  • Neletha Fuemmeler and Ramona Pieron at Footbridge Trading Company
  • Lura Faye Cotton at MosiacaRose
  • RT Lindsey at NForm
  • Michael Stelzer at Vecino Group and Do Good Lawn
  • Linda Passeri and Mary Passeri at 303 East Commercial

Heidi Herman, co-director of C-Art, described the event as an “art walk“. People can see a variety of art mediums in different businesses, including art galleries, restaurants, and stores. Businesses hosting artwork will be marked with balloons outside their front door.

After:8 murals will be added to downtown Springfield during the MIDXMIDWST festival next month

In addition to indoor art gallery presentations, The Shandiesa folk-pop duo, will perform at the White River Brewing Company and the Music school will perform at the Jefferson Avenue Foot Bridge plaza.

Herman, her husband Randy Bacon and about 10 other artists who live and work along Commercial Street, constitute the founding council of C-Art. Herman and Bacon moved Randy Bacon Photography Studio and Gallery to Commercial Street in July 2020. Herman said she was thrilled to work alongside the artists who have made up the Commercial Street community over the past decades.

As for C-Art’s future, Herman and Bacon said they expect it to be a seasonal event, held about two or three times a year. Bacon said he opted for this model, as opposed to monthly events, to allow organizers to better prepare for each event and give the community enough time to digest the art they experienced.

“With each event, having a bit more time, each one will be fresh and maybe a step up from the previous one,” Bacon said. “It really shakes things up, so people are like, ‘I have to come back.’ And then they come up and it’s like, ‘Wow, that’s really exciting.'”

For Herman, Bacon and the other founders of the event, C-Art is a community, providing a space for artists to showcase their work and bring others to experience it.

“With C-Art, we really see the ability of art to connect people,” Bacon said. “Given the past two and a half years that we have been through, now is the most important and important time to connect the community. We want Springfield to be increasingly recognized as the mecca of art, an arts destination. We want to be on that, ‘Oh Springfield, it’s an art town.'”

For event updates, follow C-Art on Instagram @c_art_commercial_street or visit the C-Art event Facebook page at fb.me/e/2cvNJw6ez.

How can artists submit to C-Art?

When she started thinking about how C-Art would work a few years ago, Herman started an artist registry to document local artists. Herman describes the registry as a “living, breathing document” that will grow with the community.

Once added to the Artist Registry, C-Art sites can contact the artist to show the work in the company.

To be included in the C-Art Artist Registry, submit the following documents to [email protected]:

  • 3-4 images of your work
  • Preferred coordinates
  • Brief description of you and your work
  • Links to website and social media
  • If you have shown work at any location in Springfield, list them

Greta Cross is the current affairs reporter for the Springfield News-Leader. Follow her on Twitter and instagram @gretacrossphoto. Story idea? Email him at [email protected]