bird painting

Remembering Jane Maier Smith – Artist

Jane SmithAugust 9, 1929 — December 24, 2019

Jane was born in Woodbury, New Jersey and came to Ohio to attend Oberlin College where she studied studio art. That’s where she met her future husband, George who was in Pre-Med/Chemistry. They were married in 1954 while George was in his fourth year of medical school. In 1962 following George’s medical residency and two years of service in the U.S. Army they moved to Lyndhurst, Ohio, and then to Shaker Heights in 1967 where they raised their four children, Matt, Chris, Tim, and Katherine.

But Jane was not to be just a mother, not that being a mother is not a daunting, full-time task. But she taught her kids by example to be involved in other things that interested them. For example, Jane began to play the piano again having learned to play as a youngster. But interest in the piano-led her naturally to curiosity about the church organ, so she began taking organ lessons from Bill Trafka, our young organist from the late ‘70s. How many moms do you know that play the organ! Besides Stephanie Price, of course.

Jane loved books and worked for the Cleveland Public Library and the Shaker Heights Public Library for a time, later becoming an assistant reference librarian. She also loved music and was a member of the FBC Chancel Choir for several decades, and played in the Hand Bell Choir as well. A compassionate person by nature, Jane became a Stephen Minister later in life.

bird paintingBut very few knew that Jane, with all the other things going on in her life, still had time to create beautiful artworks. She never lost her interest in art after she left Oberlin. Two of her 10 grandchildren approached me during the reception following Jane’s memorial service and asked if the church might have any interest in displaying some of Jane’s watercolors. With nothing currently showing or scheduled in our Fairmount Hallway Gallery I was quick to say “yes.”

farm painting

Following an organizational call with Jane’s daughter, Katherine about 15 of Jane’s works were hung the following Monday. They are exquisite! In describing them the works whimsical, pastoral, and colorful come to mind. This art show of Jane’s works will stay up at least through January. Take a walk down the Fairmount hall and see for yourself!

Kara Painting

An Artist’s Reception for Kara Hungate

Kara HungateThose magnificent paintings you have noticed in our FBC Fairmount Gallery were all produced by FBC member Kara Hungate, an accomplished artist, and art instructor. Representing several different media Kara has put together an eclectic and interesting show that we think you will greatly enjoy.

Excerpts from Kara’s Artist Statement include the following:

“A Native Clevelander, my interest in art began in childhood and has evolved over the years. Exposure to each new art technique confirmed my interest in art and I realized it was a love worthy of further pursuit.”

“My interest in teaching and my love for children prompted me to pursue a career in art as an artist, educator, and administrator, which I pursued in 1998 in Cleveland.”

“Artistic goals such as creativity, seeking inspiration through imagination, and the free act of expression are important to my own artistic spirit and voice.”

Kara will talk about her craft in this casual setting and will be happy to answer your questions. Please plan to observe her artwork, and to join her for an hour of enlightening conversation.

1:30 PM Sunday, October 1, 2017, in Spahr Center

(A light lunch for $5 per person will be available in Bell Dining Room after the church service)

Book About FBC Architecture Available

“A Guide to the Symbolism, Stone, Wood & Glass of First Baptist Church of Greater Cleveland”

Betty Meyers is pleased to announce the publication of her new book, written with the assistance of Marcine Petrea. The 90 page, softbound book guides readers through an explanation of the symbolism of the church’s beautiful stained glass windows, stone and wood carvings, and is filled with photographs. The first printing quickly sold out, but a second printing is being planned, and copies should soon be available in the church office for a donation of $20.