New exhibit opening at District Library

Published 9:26 am Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Niles Daily Star
NILES - “Special Creations, Special Memories,” a holiday exhibit of original holiday greeting cards, miniature rooms and dolls will be on exhibit in the Eleanor and Mowitt Drew Gallery of the Niles District Library, now through Jan. 3.
Every year at holiday time, the library displays some of the miniature rooms and dolls in their collection. This year, for the first time in many years, all of the Library's collection of miniature rooms and dolls will be on display, as well as a miniature country store.
The holiday cards have been gathered from six local greeting card collections and the library's art collection of work by Ella Champion. Ella was a well-known Niles school teacher, artist and writer. She often sent original greeting cards she hand-painted in watercolor to her friends. Artists, especially, often create their own holiday cards to send to their friends and family.
Spencer explained the methods the artists use to create their cards are varied and among the many also represented in this exhibition are woodcut, etching, linoleum block, styrofoam print, cut paper and found objects. A favorite method is to paint or draw one original in pastel, ink, watercolor, and other and then have a limited edition printed from that original. A series of more elaborate cards made in this way but with an added three panel form or pop-up design with glitter are also on display.
Six miniature rooms created by the late Emma Rogers are in a case surrounded by 49 dolls from the Jean Hussey doll collection. Most dolls in the collection date from the 1930s. The rooms include a lady's dressing room and bath, bedroom, library, Christmas parlor, dining room and nursery. The miniature country store was designed and crafted by John T. Jacobsen and given to the library by G.E. Porenta in memory of Martha Louise Porenta. It represents an old country store in a small town where the owners and their families lived on the second floor. This was a normal and convenient way of living for merchants, especially in America in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The two-story business buildings on Niles Main Street reflect this way of life.
Also during the month of December, the Library's lobby case will display a Snoopy Christmas collection.
The Eleanor and Mowitt Drew Gallery is located in the Library's Rotunda. Exhibitions can be viewed during regular Library hours: Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.