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DECATUR – Through most of his life, Glenn Bradshaw was a renown watercolor painter. As well as winning numerous awards during his 70-year career, he taught watercolor at the University of Illinois from 1952 until his retirement in 1986.

Bradshaw died in 2013 leaving behind hundreds of paintings, some of which had never been seen by the public and even members of his family.

Throughout March, the Decatur Area Arts Council will present a posthumous exhibition entitled “The Legacy of Glenn Bradshaw” featuring specially selected paintings. The exhibit will be in the Anne Lloyd Gallery of the Madden Arts Center. A reception will be from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 3, during the First Friday Gallery Walk. His son, Scott Bradshaw, will be speaking at 6 p.m. about the exhibit and his father.

Many of the pieces are on loan from Cinema Gallery in Urbana. “There were hundreds in his collection and some of the pieces have never been seen,” said Carolyn Baxley, owner of Cinema Gallery. “This is the crème de la crème of his pieces.”

Bradshaw's paintings range in style and sizes. The paintings created later in his life were abstract while others from his early career were expressionism, etchings, collages or whatever was a popular style at the time.

“It's hard to believe the paintings are done by only one artist,” said his son, Todd Bradshaw.

The largest permanent display of Bradshaw's paintings is at Baxley's gallery. She said Bradshaw didn't concentrate on one style.

“He was always pushing the envelope,” she said. “When you live to be 91, you have to explore different things.”

After Bradshaw died, his son Todd cleaned out his father's studio finding paintings dating to 1948.

“By 1953 he stopped dating things,” his son said.

Upon researching their father's work, the family learned more of his history, including his efforts in Germany during World War II recovering stolen art.

Todd remembers his father as a calm, well-respected teacher.

“And he raised five and they all turned out okay,” he said. “So that says something.”

The curators selected a cross-section of Bradshaw's paintings for the exhibit. They chose pieces they considered interesting, especially paintings created later in his life.

According to his son, Bradshaw lost sight in one eye 15 years before he died. He continued to travel once a year, teaching a watercolor class at a resort in a Myrtle Beach, S. C. “We thought he would quit, but he didn't,” Todd said.

March Art Exhibits

BICENTENNIAL ART CENTER. The Paris art center will display the annual exhibit, Town & Country Amateur Art Juried Exhibition, until March 17.

The Annual Edgar County Student Show will begin Tuesday, March 21.

BLUE CONNECTION. Millikin University's retail art facility will feature the work of Millikin student Tyrone Parry. The gallery will be open during the First Friday Gallery Walk from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 3 with an artist talk at 6 p.m.

DECATUR AIRPORT GALLERY. Pam Marty's paintings will be displayed at the Airport Gallery in March.

FLOURISHES GALLERY AND STUDIOS. The downtown Shelbyville gallery will exhibit the early works of Carol Kessler. The art will include various pieces including sculptures and pastels.

Art depicting the General Dacey Trail and Forest Park's Sunken Garden will be in Studio D. The Junior area located in the ballroom will house several pieces from Bridgette Cole's fifth grade Shelbyville class. The displays will be featured until April 15.

For an appointment, call (217) 827-5690.

GALLERY 510. Gallery 510 will display the watercolors of Mike Delaney. A reception will be held during First Friday Gallery Walk, 5 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 3. An artist's talk will be at 6:30 p.m.

GIERTZ GALLERY. The Parkland College gallery will continue the exhibit featuring the the works of Alicia Henry titled “Homecoming” until March 28. For more information, visit

KRANNERT ART MUSEUM. The University of Illinois art museum will continue the display “Did You Know We Taught Them How to Dance?” by Zina Saro-Wiwa, featuring artwork from popular Nigerian culture, folklore and traditions through photographs, video and sound installation. The exhibit will be displayed through March 25.

The exhibit “In Rehearsal” features the work Autumn Knight. The display will be open until May 14 on the Main Level in the Gelvin Noel Annex and Light Court.

“Enough to Live On: Art from the Works Progress Administration” will be featured until April 22 in the Rosann Gelvin Noel Gallery on the Main Level.

LINCOLN ART INSTITUTE. Logan County Arts will display an exhibit featuring artists Kira Jackson and Rob Swofford. The exhibit is titled “Two Perspectives, Two Journeys.” An opening reception will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, March 10, at the Lincoln Art Institute, 112 S. Mclean St. Call (217) 651-8355 for an appointment.

MERVIN AND WAKELEY GALLERIES. Throughout March, the Illinois Wesleyan University gallery will feature the printmaking artwork of Jonathan Higgins and Bill Conger's sculptures using physical objects.

PERKINSON ART GALLERY. Kirkland Fine Arts Center's art gallery will display the works of the Millikin Faculty Biennial exhibit throughout March.

ROCK SPRINGS NATURE CENTER. Rock Springs Nature Center's north wing art gallery will display pieces from the Decatur Audubon Society's exhibit “Audubon-Not Just for the Birds.” The exhibit will feature prints, mounted bird specimens and information about the Audubon Society.

The Colin J. Bishop and Mikayla Jean Mendenhall Art Exhibit will be featured in the south gallery of the nature center. The works of the Millikin student and alumna center around nature and abstract pieces.

Both exhibits will be on display until the end of the April.

TARBLE ARTS CENTER. Eastern Illinois University's main art gallery will display the Undergraduate All-Student Show until April 2.

In the Brainard Gallery, an exhibition by artist Stewart Goldman titled “Mythic Macrocosm” will be featured until May 14.

The EGallery will present the works of the Blackbox exhibition by artist Jacco Olivier titled “Cosmology in Flux” until May 14.

Tours are available by appointment only. To schedule a tour, call (217) 581-2787 or email

UNIVERSITY GALLERIES. The Illinois State University art gallery will feature three exhibits until April 2. The displays will include “Schematics, Survellance, Murder” by Deb Sokolow; “Manual GRAFT” by Edra Soto; and “Subdivision” by Allison Lacher and Jeff Robinson.

UPSTAIRS GALLERY. The artwork of the Richard Colbeck will be displayed at the Decatur Public Library’s second floor gallery throughout March.

WILDFLOUR ARTISAN BAKERY AND CAFE. The photography of Greg Fombelle will be on display at the artisan cafe during March.


"Together Decatur" Columnist and Food and Drink Reporter

“Together Decatur” columnist and food and drink reporter for Lee Enterprises Central Illinois.

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