Gallery holds fall artists’ reception

WEIRTON – The Hancock County Art Council held its fall quarterly artists’ reception Tuesday at the Summit Gallery at the Top of West Virginia Convention and Visitors Bureau located at 3393 Main St.

Dr. John Capito, Gerald Van Scyoc, Jim Watson and Robert Watson were the featured artists, and Dean Drake was the event chair. It is the group’s third exhibit.

“The point is to bring art into Hancock County,” said Drake. “We want to make people aware of the talent in the area.”

The event has grown each time it’s been held, Drake said.

Visitors Bureau Executive Director Dan Greathouse said the gallery is a potential draw to visitors, who then may visit local businesses.

“This all is the hard work of the arts council,” he said.

The art council changes the gallery installations each quarter, and the group is hoping to soon have an installation including sculpture and pottery. The next installation and artists’ reception will be announced as details become available. The focus is on, but not limited to, artists from the Tri-State Area.

Under the guidance of the HCAC, the installations at Summit Gallery change each quarter, primarily showcasing works from Tri-State Area artists in a variety of mediums. Each new grouping of artist and artwork with be celebrated with an evening artists’ reception.

Capito of Weirton began creating thematic pop art photography after a family Halloween photo became a Christmas card hit, graduating to more elaborate shoots. He creates concepts and sketches out the concepts, spending approximately a year on each one. Weirton photographer Bill Zablackas produces the special effects and take the photographs.

Van Scyoc of Steubenville has been painting for nearly 30 years and prefers large-format oil paints, despite having dabbled in video art in the 1990s. He has participated in art shows in the Tri-State Area for approximately 20 years. His artwork is on view at the Shadyside Library and Ohio University Eastern. He is a Center of Music and Art instructor.

Jim Watson of Steubenville began focusing on his art following retirement from Weirton Steel Corp. He earned best of show for two consecutive years at the Wellsburg Spring Exhibit and best of show by public vote at the Oglebay Institute’s Stifel Fine Arts Center. He works primarily in oils and colored pencils and also works with pen and ink, acrylics and calligraphy. He is a Steubenville Art Association member and Art Institute of Pittsburgh graduate.

Robert Watson of Weirton is inspired by watercolorists John Pike, Tom Lynch, Jeanne Dobie and Charles Reid and prefers painting dilapidated houses and shipyards.

He is self-taught and began pursuing art seriously after his mother-in-law entered one of his paintings in a county fair, where it won first place. Recently relocated from Atlanta, he is a Georgia Watercolor Society signature member.

Local winemaker Mike Orecchio donated beverages, and the visitors bureau provided refreshments.

(Wallace-Minger can be contacted at