Studio 55 Fine Arts Guild was organized in 1996 by Dr. Bradley J. Fisher, Missouri State University Emeritus faculty and coordinator for the MSU Gerontology Program. Studio 55’s President Ramona Gist says Dr. Fisher “asked a group of older citizens to form a group of artists, and to encourage each other in their art. And that group has grown now to 128 members” representing all forms of visual art. In fact, they’ve just this year changed their membership guidelines so that any artist age 18 or older is eligible to join. “We had so many young, active people wanting to get involved in our organization,” says Ramona Gist.
Studio 55 Fine Arts Guild holds monthly meetings the second Wednesday of the month at 1:00pm at National Avenue Christian Church, usually featuring a guest speaker—working artists such as the “Gourd Lady,” illustrator Eric Ray, and engraver David Bigelow. The church, in exchange for offering free access to their facilities for Studio 55’s monthly meetings, requests that the group do one fundraising event each year “to give back to the community,” according to Studio 55 President Ramona Gist.
This the group’s fourth year to hold an exhibit and silent auction to raise money for charity, and for the second year in a row all proceeds from their 2017 auction will go to Sammy's Window, a division of Foster Adopt Connect, which provides various services for foster and adopted children going to new homes & families. The event is Friday September 1st from 6:30 to 8:00pm at National Avenue Christian Church, 1515 S. National. The number of items for the silent auction has increased from more than 80 last year to over 100 this time. Auction items include gift certificates from area restaurants and breweries, haircuts & styling, jewelry, hand-painted cards, gift baskets of all types and many other items from businesses & individuals. There will be a raffle for a two-night stay at the Dickey House Bed and Breakfast in Marshfield, MO. Studio 55 members’ art for sale will include watercolors, oils, acrylics, fiber art, wood carvings, sculptures, photography, mixed media & pottery. For more information about the event contact Mona Gist of Studio55 at 417-818-3275 or visit www.studio55guild.com. In connection with the auction, Bambino’s Café, 1141 E. Delmar will sponsor an event Wednesday Aug.30 from 4pm til closing, where Bambino’s will donate 25% of all sales to Sammy’s Window.