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posted: 2/21/2014 4:30 AM

Guge Institute hosts open house Saturday at Elgin Artspace

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  • Josh Guge works on one of his bird projects near his work space covered with all kinds of carving drill bits. The Guge Institute and Art Studio is now located in Elgin.

       Josh Guge works on one of his bird projects near his work space covered with all kinds of carving drill bits. The Guge Institute and Art Studio is now located in Elgin.
    Photos by Christopher Hankins | Staff Photographer

  • A few finished pieces are on display in an area that will be used by students to do their own work at the Guge Institute and Art Studio in Elgin.

       A few finished pieces are on display in an area that will be used by students to do their own work at the Guge Institute and Art Studio in Elgin.
    Christopher Hankins | Staff Photographer

  • Josh Guge, owner of the Guge Institute and Art Studio in Elgin, uses myriad carving tools.

       Josh Guge, owner of the Guge Institute and Art Studio in Elgin, uses myriad carving tools.
    Christopher Hankins | Staff Photographer

  • Josh Guge is the owner of the Guge Institute and Art Studio, a woodcarving school previously located in Gilberts, that has moved into the Elgin Artspace Lofts in downtown Elgin. Guge carves a lot of birds in the studio, which was founded by Josh Guge and his father, Bob Guge, who died in November after battling brain cancer.

       Josh Guge is the owner of the Guge Institute and Art Studio, a woodcarving school previously located in Gilberts, that has moved into the Elgin Artspace Lofts in downtown Elgin. Guge carves a lot of birds in the studio, which was founded by Josh Guge and his father, Bob Guge, who died in November after battling brain cancer.
    Christopher Hankins | Staff Photographer

 
 

A popular woodcarving institute that started in Gilberts is the newest tenant in downtown Elgin's Artspace Lofts.

The Guge Institute and Art Studio, owned by three-time world champion wood sculptor Josh Guge, will host an open house from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday.

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Formerly called the Guge Institute of Wildlife Art, it was founded by Guge and his father, Bob Guge, who died in November after battling brain cancer.

"I told him we were moving the shop to Elgin and he was excited about it, but he never got to see it. He was already in hospice," Josh Guge said.

"It's kind of sad he's not a part of it."

A representative of Ludwig Co., which manages Elgin Artspace, said the Guge Institute now occupies the last available commercial space in the building.

Guge said he's been enjoying his modern, 700-square-foot digs in the mixed-use building that also has 55 affordable housing units for artists and their families.

"There are a lot of artists that live and work here, and I thought it would be really neat," he said. "Elgin has been really big on promoting the arts in the past few years."

The old location, which closed in September, occupied a part of Josh Guge's home. Guge said he and his wife decided to keep their home and business separate.

The open house will offer information about power carving classes, including detailing and painting, and art classes such as painting, drawing and airbrush.

The Guge Institute and Art Studio is at Elgin Artspace, Suite C, 51 S. Spring St.

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