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Why you should win a marathon

Ceramics artist Kathy Fodness is a prolific, inspiring presence in our SBMA studios.

For the great majority of us, some SBMA staff members included, it’s nearly impossible to imagine running a marathon, let alone winning one.  If you’ve ever watched a marathon in person and seen the leaders at mile 20 or so, you know those people have got something that you just don’t.  And when this year’s Sunburst Marathon winners sprint across that finish line on June 2, they’ll get something else you wish you had: artwork by Kathy Fodness.

Native American ceramic artist Kathy Fodness has been a friend of SBMA for many years, volunteering with youth classes and events, and frequenting our studios to perfect her artistic techniques.  So when the Sunburst Races asked us to commission a local artist to create the first place awards for the 2012 races, Kathy came to mind instantly.  Given the way these awards are turning out, we know we made the right choice.  We’ll give you a sneak peek at what Kathy has been creating, but we have to warn you – this click may cause the sudden dusting off of running shoes!



The Best of SBMA 2011

Skateboards, shopping and Rain barrels…just a few of the things that represent the highlights of the past year here at SBMA. As we cross over from 2011 to 2012, we want to thank all of our members, visitors, students and instructors for all they have done to help make the past year such a successful one here at SBMA.  When the “all call” went out to our staff asking for their favorite memories of 2011, the number of events and accomplishments that were recalled and shared was overwhelming!  We have every reason to look back with gratitude and pride and ahead with excitement.  LEARN MORE about the YEAR’s BEST AT SBMA by CLICKING HERE.

SBMA Gets “Ugly”

It’s a tale that we can all somehow relate to, even if we’ve never read the book. Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Ugly Duckling” tells the story of a duckling immediately rejected at birth due to his outwardly “ugly” appearance. Ultimately transforming into a graceful swan, “Ugly” teaches everyone that beauty truly is found within.

It is this message of acceptance that was the theme for a community outreach project in which the South Bend Museum of Art teamed up with the City of South Bend, the South Bend Civic Theatre, and the Weed and Seed Alliance to lead children in the creation of a backdrop to complement South Bend Civic Theatre’s production of “Honk!” (a modern adaptation of Andersen’s “Ugly Duckling” story).

Through teamwork, story telling, and the creation of personal drawings, the children, as young as seven and as old as thirteen, developed interesting works of art based on what they took away from “The Ugly Duckling” story: accept people for who they are.

SEE MORE pictures from this project and LEARN MORE about it here.

Getting “Ugly” part 2

From ugly eggs hatching beautiful flowers to a black and grey plaid duckling to an egg literally hatching “love,” it seems as though every child who participated in the SBMA’s “Weed-N-Seed” project was able to relate to the message of “The Ugly Duckling”. And though their artwork revealed mixed visual images, in the end, their messages were clear: accept people for who they are, which was actually the title of one child’s artwork.

The fruits of their efforts came to life on Friday May 6th as the finished 16’ x 7’ backdrop was revealed at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church for performance night. A colorful and childlike creation, the backdrop exists as a combination of everyone’s artwork. It features an “ugly” duckling swimming under a bright yellow sun with the message “accept people for who they are” floating in the clouds. Each child has a bit of him or herself in this artwork, whether it is in the painting, the drawing, or their actual signature as a stamped handprint. In the end, everyone, including the parents, were all smiles, because let’s face it – it just feels good to be a part of something.

SBMA’s Friday Forecast: Artistic with a Chance for Rain Barrels

April showers have brought us May…barrels!  Rain barrels, that is, made possible through the Indiana University at South Bend’s Center for a Sustainable Future and hand painted by a dozen different local artists and art groups.  These unique works of green art are not only perfectly practical, economical, and good for the environment, they’re just plain fun to look at.  They’re even better to own.

That’s why we welcome all visitors to our First Friday event, tonight – May 6 – our Rain Barrel Auction at 7 p.m.  Guests are invited to bid on these one-of-a-kind containers and to enter a drawing for a free, unpainted rain barrel.  The evening will also feature a brief lesson on how collecting rain water benefits the budget and beautifies the garden.

For more information about the IUSB Center for a Sustainable Future, go to <;

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