As part of their efforts to refurbish the River District, John Gillott and Andrew Simek purchased the Old Manufacturers Bank building at 402 E. State St., one of Rockfords landmarks, in 2002.
The building was previously Zant Office Supply and was renamed the Elevator Building in 2003. Now, Gillott and Simek have teamed up with local artist and art leader Jeanne Coe to add a new twist to the area.
Coe is presently director of The Art Co-op at the Village Gallery in Stewart Square. Together with Tudor Dicu and Mary Rosandich, they are introducing a new type of art show, a sidewalk art show. After opening night, sightseers, pedestrians and tourists will be able to view the art of the beautiful spacious first floor showroomfrom the sidewalk. The public is invited to the opening Friday, Aug. 12, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., and will be able to wander throughout this historical building. The show will feature the art of Tudor Dicu from Hungary and Jeanne Coe of Rockford. Mary Rosandich, also from the Rockford area, will accent the windows with her stained glass creations.
Tudor Dicu was born in a Transylvania village in northern Romania. He was an art prodigy, and by sixth grade, he was placed in formal art school. His studies placed an emphasis on sculpture and painting, which is evident today in his very painterly style. You see the depth, motion and romance in his work. Dicus landscapes are all in the rich style that sold out in Budapest, Berlin and Frankfort.
Jeanne Coe, a native of Rockford, also had an early start in art. She was the first student in Boylan High School to have her own office adjacent to the nurses office, where she created all of Boylans programs and fliers. She went on to Rockford College with a full art scholarship. For the past eight years, she has been the solo featured artist for the R. K. Witt showrooms at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago (where she is presently sold out), and has achieved many national recognitions. Her paintings are done with an airbrushed background and acrylic overlay. With her use of color and balance, Coe strives to create a feeling of wellness throughout her contemporary style.
From the Aug. 10-16, 2005, issue