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Published: June 7, 2023

Every two years Kendal spotlights residents who are painters, photographers, fiber artists, woodworkers, ceramicists and the like. The exhibit is called Kendal Creates and fills all three Kendal galleries until Aug. 14.This year the 57 artists include a handful of new residents who barely had time to unpack their artwork. Meet four of Kendal’s new artists “in residence.”

Dave Coffin (and his wife Louise) joined Kendal April 2023

Dave’s “Ukraine’s Tragedy” painting grew out of his interested in military history and visits to battle fields.

“When we travel to Belgium we stay in Ypres. Six hundred thousand soldiers, from both sides, were killed in this one area between 1914 and 1918. If you spend time in the area you will see a famous photo of the Ypres Cloth Hall completely bombed out with only the skeleton of its tower left standing.

When Russia invaded Ukraine I noticed the similarities.

I believe the painting came from this haunting image in Ypres.

I used glass of this size and weight for the first time. The paint is a very thick industrial - like acrylic. My thought was to give as many layers and texture possible, including seeing through to the back glass.

The tower came late in the process of adding and removing colors producing layers ( always monitoring the paint drying time, using this as a blending agent ). It was 4:45 am, two days into the painting, when I started to use the color of blood red in the tower.

Then I stopped, one of the most important parts of painting.”

Kathleen Cerveny joined Kendal March 2023

Kathleen’s “Broken House Book” was made when she was going through a difficult period.

“I decided to distract myself and go back to school to pursue a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing/Poetry. Although I planned to delve deep into resonant and universal themes of the human condition, I found it impossible to get beyond the discontent and unhappiness that I’d brought with me, and so gave in to this as the raw material that I had to work with in that moment.

As a visual artist whose joy has always been in ‘making things’ – my BFA was in ceramics – I decided to craft a hand-made book for my first semester project. I was pleased that the final object turned out to be both impermeable (yet not opaque) and a little sharp-edged; attributes that reflected my emotional state at the time. And the poems, sparingly illustrated throughout, move from ache to joy with a toe-dip into humor.

Although my writing has moved on, I still love this ‘book’ and brought it with me at another important transition point in my life – moving to Kendal. While this transition has been nothing but joyous, my “Broken House Book” is a reminder of the impermanence of any given moment in life, and that I have within me, what it takes to keep moving forward.”

Stephen Kerr joined Kendal March 2023

When Stephen retired he moved to Santa Fe and decided to take up photography and travel the region in his teardrop trailer.

The photograph he submitted for the exhibit was taken in the Bisti/De-Na-Zin wilderness in the Four Corners region of Northwest New Mexico, described on its website as a “fantasy world of strange rock formations made of interbedded sandstone, shale, mudstone, coal and silt.”

Explains Stephen: “The site is on Bureau of Land Management and but except for a parking area and pit toilet, it’s totally undeveloped so we brought food and water and camped out overnight.  The area where the photo was taken  is about a three mile hike from the parking area and we saw no other people the entire time we were there. Quite unusual in this day and age! We were there  in the late afternoon so the lighting  and cloud formations made the conditions ideal for photography that day.”

Catharina Meints Caldwell joined Kendal September 2022

Cathy and her husband built an unusual house in the Oberlin woods, but Jim died onths after their move there in 2004. After his death Cathy started taking art lessons at FAVA and found enjoyment painting features of the house, both inside and out.

“This show has a watercolor of a side view of the house and a small oil of an interior view which includes a French Art nouveau chair, part of a set I had to sell to downsize to fit into Kendal. The round door was Jim’s first idea for the house—a combination of the SciFi series Stargate and the ancient Asian tradition of round doors. 

Most of the paintings of my house are on my walls with some in storage waiting to be cycled in and out for a seasonal variety.” 



Why Oberlin?

Kendal at Oberlin offers an active lifestyle with local opportunities for learning, art and culture.

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Author Molly Kavanaugh 2020In the past, Molly Kavanaugh frequently wrote about Kendal at Oberlin for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, where she was a reporter for 16 years. Now we are happy to have her writing for the Kendal at Oberlin Community.

About Kendal at Oberlin: Kendal is a nonprofit life plan community serving older adults in northeast Ohio. Located about one mile from Oberlin College and Conservatory, and about a 40 minute drive from downtown Cleveland, Kendal offers a vibrant resident-led lifestyle with access to music, art and lifelong learning.