Artist collectives are often born out of the need to connect with others, and Peoria’s own Third Thursday Art Club was no exception. A pair of retired graphic artists, Ken Clubb and David Seay, first discussed the idea with SJ Boyd and Steph Van Doren in early 2018. They all agreed on the concept, so the four artists held their first meeting at Zion Coffee Bar.
“We all had the same need—we wanted to hang out with other fine artists in our age group who were still creating art,” Van Doren explains. “We came to the conclusion that we had a unique set of needs and concerns that couldn't be addressed by younger, up-and-coming artists. We all immediately felt the benefits at our gathering and decided to meet every third Thursday at Rhodell Brewery.”
After a few meetings, they invited other artists to join them. “We discuss art and art-related topics, share what we are working on in our studios (including bringing in work for mini-critiques), visit each other’s studios, and share valuable exhibition and professional knowledge,” says Van Doren. It’s a nice mix of longtime artists and others who have never shown their work in an art show before.
A group like this was especially intriguing to Bob Doucette, who moved to Peoria with his husband just over a year ago—a mindful escape from the high cost of living and lengthy commutes of Los Angeles. Invited to join the group, Doucette jumped at the opportunity. “There’s great camaraderie and friendship, which is very important when you’re new to town,” he explains.
All of the dozen or so members of the Third Thursday Art Club agree that building those relationships is not only good for their art, it’s good for their souls. “Being an artist is a very solitary existence,” notes Carrie Pearce. “It is a great benefit to get out of the studio and actually speak with like-minded individuals!”
They’ve also hit the sweet spot and aren’t taking on any new members. “We have elected to remain small and loosely organized to better facilitate the needs of our group,” Van Doren notes.
Peoria Magazines, located at 4736 N. University Street in Peoria, will exhibit the work of the Third Thursday Art Club from April 1st through the end of June. Stop in Monday through Friday, 8am to 4:30pm, to check out this eclectic collection from seasoned creatives.
A reception will be held on Thursday, April 18th from 4:30 to 6:00pm, and the public is invited to attend. Come check out the work of the following artists:
- Connie Andrews
- SJ Boyd
- Sherri Burritt
- Ken Clubb
- Bob Doucette
- Christopher Gauthier
- Reid Hansen
- Carrie Pearce
- Barbie Perry
- David Seay
- Steph Van Doren PM