Artful Considerations by Robin Shively – April 2018

By March 22, 2018Blog

In last month’s column, I started to explore the outdoor sculptures along South Florissant Road. A favorite of mine has always been the sculpture installed near the entrance to the Ferguson Library. It portrays a little boy sitting cross-legged in front of a stack of books. The boy appears to be wondrously engrossed by the world emerging from the open book before him. That sculpture, aptly entitled “The World Within”, was created by William N. Duncan and I have been told that the model for the little boy was his grandson. Bill Duncan, a self-taught artist and longtime Ferguson resident, recently passed away at the age of 89. I never had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Duncan, but his whimsical sculptures always brought a smile whenever I passed his home at the corner of Elizabeth and Darst. His yard was an enchanted garden inhabited by delightful creations. There was a whale’s tail, chipmunks, a hippopotamus head, a sea serpent half-submerged in the lawn, and a boy frolicked with his dog alongside the “Doubtful Dragon”. Adding to this viewer’s amusement, the creatures often wore Santa caps with beards at Christmas time and held flags while sporting red, white & blue hats for the 4th of July! Bill Duncan and his art brought smiles to many and he will be sorely missed by many in the Ferguson community.

Upcoming art events in Ferguson during the month of April include:

Corners Frameshop & Gallery focuses on the literary arts during its First Friday event by hosting a reception for three local authors on April 6th. Children’s author Dee Livers and Ferguson’s own Braxton DeGarmo will be joined by “60 Days” author Piper Punches. All authors will be on hand to discuss and sign copies of their books between 5:00 and 8:00p.m. Ms. Punches will also talk about a creative workshop planned for a later date.

Also on April 6th, members of the community are invited to Corners to participate in a collaborative project to be submitted as an entry in #ThisIsMyFerguson, a special art exhibit planned for August. Contributors do not need any drawing or painting expertise. This project focuses on the power of single words to convey what we value about Ferguson, words that; evoke cherished memories, affirm one’s present values, or portray visions for the future.

Preparations for #ThisIsMyFerguson continue.  Follow developments on the event’s Facebook page, #ThisIsMyFerguson. Participation from community members is encouraged. Volunteers are needed in the following capacities; artists to help encourage Fergusonians to make art, teams for the installation of the show during the week prior to August 4, and hostesses/hosts for the receptions that will take place simultaneously at the various venues on August 4. The show’s committee also seeks ideas for making this event a success.

Good Shepherd Arts Center’s April exhibit will be “The Art of Healing: Hope, Dignity and Respect,” featuring Queen of Peace Center, Adolescent Resource Center, community, clients, partners and staff.”  The exhibit will open on Friday, April 6, with a reception from 6:00– 9:00 p.m. This is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. “The Art of Healing” will run through Saturday, April 28.

Other activities scheduled at GSAC include: Friday, April 13, Grown-up Coloring Party;
Friday, April 20, Visio Divina; Friday, April 27, 7:00 p.m., “Mahila: A Woman’s Movement Rising” film and discussion.

For inclusion in this column, please send information about Ferguson artists and art events to