Last weekend we attended an exhibition called Dark Tranquility at Coalesce Studios in Sullivan, IL. The brainchild of longtime Beemsville ally, Nick, the show featured a pleasing mix of whimsy and darkness through painting, sculpture, and photography.
Now Sullivan, with its couple thousand people on the north end of Lake Shelbyville is not exactly an artistic hub. The town does have a long tradition of theater (Little Theater on the Square) and some nice restaurants. It also has, like so many other small Midwestern towns, big old buildings in various stages of dis-use or abandonment. This is where Nick and company come in.
Coalesce is part of a larger art community located at a refurbished old shoe factory – the Factory Art Studios at 321 S. Hamilton in Sullivan. These studios include a variety of painters sculptors, woodworkers, graphic designers, and at least one professional comic book artist (shout-out, Zac.) They have joint exhibitions. They have bands coming through there. It’s a great setting for some culture in the midst of corn and soybean country.
So if you find yourself in the Lake Shelbyville region, head for the Factory Art Studios in Sullivan and check them out. You will not be disappointed.