Indiana Daily Student –

Free Mellencamp exhibit on display

By Kate Thacker | IDS Reports | September 17, 2012

The life works of Marilyn Mellencamp, including portraits and still-life paintings, are now on display at the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center.

Mellencamp, mother of musician John Mellencamp, passed away in January.

The Marilyn Mellencamp Memorial Art Exhibit was organized with the Mellencamp family and Connie and Steve Ferguson. Her family wanted to pay tribute to her artistic accomplishments and raise awareness about the new Marilyn Mellencamp Scholarship for the Arts, according to the press release.

Forms and envelopes for donations to the scholarship fund are on a table in the Waldron auditorium, where the exhibit is displayed.

Created as a fund with the Community Foundation of Jackson County, the scholarship will provide a high school senior in Seymour, Ind., with tuition support to study fine arts, theater or music in college.

Mellencamp began to pursue painting as a career in 1959 after studying with Brown County impressionist painter John Rigley.

She attended the Herron School of Art and Design in Indianapolis and studied painting in New York, France and Spain, according to the press release.

Mellencamp’s portraits are in the gallery with the rest of her paintings.

“Young Girl in Hat” is a portrait of a young girl against a hunter green background. The rich color is juxtaposed with orange streaks in her hair and a small orange flower on her lapel.

The rich black color of the girl’s dress in hat is mirrored in “Young Self,” a similar 16-by-20 inch portrait on the opposite side of the gallery.

Presumably a self-portrait of Mellencamp as a young woman, the figure wears a quizzical stare and a vibrant red shirt against a dark backdrop.

A few of Mellencamp’s still-life paintings feature a variety of jars and fruit.

“Jug and Grapes,” a small still life measuring only 9-by-12 inches, features rich shades of purple and brown. A white jug with Chinese symbols stands out from its dark background.

The exhibit is free and open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and will remain on display through Saturday.

“By making their scholarship available to theater performance and music students, as well as fine arts students, the Mellencamp family is supporting the full range of artistic expression and affirming their faith in the next generation,” Julie Roberts, gallery director, said in the press release.

Copyright © 2012 Indiana Daily Student


About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana's largest public postsecondary institution and the nation's largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and also serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, long- and short-term certificate programs, industry certifications, and training that aligns with the needs of the community. The College provides a seamless transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor's degree.