Westerville News & Public Opinion

April once again is Celebrate the Arts Month


A monthlong celebration of the Arts is underway in Westerville. Westerville is a community full of Arts -- from visual, theatrical, musical and dance to literature. April is Arts Month is recognition of the Arts for and by all residents of Westerville. We invite you to check out the below Arts calendar and join in on the celebration.

Nigerian artist Said Oladejo-Lawal
featured in the gallery at Java Central

Java Central Coffee House, 20 South State St. in Uptown Westerville, is now presenting the spectacular art of Nigerian artist, Said Oladejo-Lawal, in the Java Gallery through April.

Lawal is originally from the western part Nigeria, but has lived in the U.S. since 2009 and resides in the Westerville area with his wife and two children. He has a Bachelor degree in Graphic Design from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and a Bachelor degree in Painting from the prestigious Yaba College of Technology in Lagos, Nigeria.

His works feature three distinct styles all with vibrant color. "Painting has been my passion for a long time, since my childhood days, and I should say it is a matter of being inspired by my Father, who was an industrial painter with sharp design abilities. My art is a glimpse into my soul and it gives an idea of what are my joys, peace and aspirations. I express all these feelings and emotions through the use of media like: oil, pastel, acrylic, watercolor and photography."

Lawal's art currently hangs in private and corporate collections in England, Ireland, Lebanon, Nigeria and the United States. He is a member of the Dublin Area Art League and the Worthington Area Art League.

A free public reception will be held in the Gallery from 6-8 p.m. April 24. This is an opportunity to meet Said, discuss his art and techniques and purchase his highly collectible art. Light refreshments will be served.

Celebrate the Arts --
2014 Writing Contest Reception and Awards Ceremony

The Arts Council of Westerville, Westerville Public Library and ThisWeek Westerville News & Public Opinion will recognize the top finishers of the 2014 Westerville Writing Contest on Sunday, April 13 at the Westerville Public Library, 126 S. State Street. Winners will also be sharing their work with public readings starting at 2 p.m. with grades K-5 and grades 6-Adult at 3 p.m.

Westerville City Schools
Arts Reception and Exhibition

Artwork created by students at the elementary and secondary levels will be on public display April 14-30.

On Sunday, April 27 elementary art teachers and the Arts Council of Westerville will sponsor a reception from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at the Westerville Community Center, 350 N. Cleveland Ave. Superintendent John Kellogg will be the guest speaker and the Emerson Taiko drummers, led by Mary Rebekah Fortman, will perform. The art exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.

Later that same day, from 3 to 4 p.m., secondary schools will celebrate Arts Month with a display at the Westerville Public Library, 126 S. State St. The show will highlight the accomplishments of selected students in grades six through 12. Light refreshments will be served.

Arts Alley returns to 4th Fridays

"Arts Alley" is entering its second year as part of 4th Fridays in Westerville. Arts Alley was created to provide a space for local artists to sell their arts and crafts and for the public to interact with artists. Additionally, at each 4th Friday there will be a different performing artist who will create an interactive art project for the public to participate in. This is a new addition to Arts Alley and will be an exciting way for families and people of all ages to engage with a working artist and help to create a project. In the future, the hope is to continue to grow Arts Alley as a part of 4th Friday and as a place for the public to access, interact with, and support local artists.

Phyllis Self, recreation operations superintendent for the Westerville Parks and Recreation Department, is a member of the Arts Council of Westerville.