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posted: 7/10/2013 4:34 PM

Woman's club brings fine art to Naper Settlement

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  • Marianne Lisson Kuhn has attended the Naperville Woman's Club Fine Art Fair for more than 20 years. She is known for her murals on Naperville's Century Walk.

    Marianne Lisson Kuhn has attended the Naperville Woman's Club Fine Art Fair for more than 20 years. She is known for her murals on Naperville's Century Walk.
    Daily Herald file photo

By Sean Hammond

Marianne Lisson Kuhn has been doing her best to preserve Naperville's past and present. She's not doing it with a camera or a keyboard, but with pen and ink, watercolor and pastel.

Lisson Kuhn has been documenting the historic buildings of downtown Naperville and Naperville's beginnings as a farming town in her artwork since she first became interested in art as a student studying fashion design and illustration at the College of DuPage.

This weekend Lisson Kuhn once again will show her work at the Naperville Woman's ClubFine Art Fair. She looks forward to this event for its closeness -- about a mile from her home -- and its location at the Naper Settlement.

"There are a lot are local artists," Lisson Kuhn said. "It's a nice variety of artwork that has evolved over the years. And you never know who is going to be there."

The art fair will host more than 100 artists and thousands of unique items, some of which will be for sale and others that will be entered into silent auctions. All types of art will be on display, including ceramic, glass, paint, jewelry, photography, wood and more.

Many artists from Naperville and the surrounding area attend the event while others come from as far as Florida, Arizona and New York.

Lisson Kuhn has lost count of how long she's been attending the event, but she guesses it's somewhere between 20 and 25 years. She is a fifth-generation Naperville resident who is mostly self-taught when it comes to art.

"There are artists on both sides of my family," she said. "It's kind of in the genes."

Lisson Kuhn is currently working on her fourth mural for Naperville's Century Walk. She said she likes to show off much of her Naperville-themed artwork at the woman's club art fair -- specifically antique tractor drawings.

Now in its 54th year, the art fair began in the 1960s with artists displaying their work on workbenches in front of the band shell at Naperville's Central Park.

This year's fair will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, July 13 and 14, at the Naper Settlement, 523 S. Webster St., Naperville. Event organizer Roxanne Lang said she always looks forward to seeing Lisson Kuhn's work, as well as the work of many the other artists.

"I love seeing the new things the artists create with their medium," Lang said. "It always amazes me what people's imaginations come up with. We want people to come away saying, 'Wow, I never thought of doing that.'"

The art fair also will feature live performances including the flamenco guitar duo Patchouli, which will perform from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, and Project Inclusion Ensemble from the Chicago Sinfonietta, which will perform from 1 to 1:45 p.m. Sunday.

With so many artists converging on Naperville, it will be a good chance for artists and art lovers to see and purchase a variety of artwork, all the proceeds of which will either go back into the community or be donated to Naperville food pantries.

"It's a nice atmosphere, with the music, food and art," Lisson Kuhn said. "There's a lot of good art from all different media."

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