2024 Past Exhibits

Series One

January 19 – February 25, 2024

“She Said” was created around a group of connected artwork by three women artists from South Bend, IN, who are inspired by the resilience and strength of women across time and place. The works by Liz Roetzel, Laurie Rousseau and Helen Geglio span a range of materials from mixed media collage to prints and fiber art. Together, they form an exploration and celebration of female empowerment.

“Synthesis” Maya Ankenbruck and Brooke Kartje use intuitive thought processes to explore the subconscious mind through their artwork. A theme of manipulated perspective can be seen in both artists.

“Show Us What Ya Got” Featuring Box Factory Students The Box Factory’s mission is to enrich our community by nurturing and celebrating the creative arts. Part of this is achieved through teaching – including drawing and watercolor, knitting, sewing, quilting, and founding artist Bob Williams’ decades-long tradition of portrait classes. “Show Us What Ya Got” is comprised of art created by students who have taken classes at the Box Factory.

“The Sky’s the Limit!” The “installation” of this exhibit will take place for the entire run of the show. Artists and groups are invited to create work in the gallery space, then pin it up on a communal wall for others to enjoy. Some materials will be available, or BYO. Visit often to add to the exhibit and check out how it changes.

Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition Series 2023: Series 6
Member Show and David Jones

November 10 – January 14, 2024

Riverwalk and Williams Galleries

Member Show

Berrien Artist Guild members were invited to be inspired by this year’s theme “Remembering Songs of Youth”. A creative piece inspired by music loved from long ago.

Whitlow Gallery

David Jones
Born 1950 London, UK | Resides in Portage, MI

Artist Information

I emigrated to the USA in 1974 at the age of 24 and became a resident of Portage in 1994. My full time career was in engineering in several companies with 25 years at Consumers Energy before retiring. I always had a strong interest in photography as a hobby and upon retirement became both a student and instructor at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts (KIA). After a number of years, I was looking for a new creative outlet that emphasized more direct contact between the mind and the medium. Although I hadn’t painted since high school, I decided in 2014 to explore the world of watercolors through a class at the KIA; my expectations were not that great but I was pleasantly surprised. With continued classes both at KIA and privately, I have found my voice in the medium of watercolors and am continuing to evolve towards a style that predominates, a journey that never ends but changes over time.

My initial classes aligned perfectly with my desire to develop a “loose” painting style (not easy by the way) in the manner of many traditional English watercolorists of the 20th century such as James Fletcher Watson, Edward Wesson, Edward Seago, and John Yardley to name but a few. American artists’ work including that of early Andrew Wyeth (pre-Hopper) and John Singer Sargent have also inspired me to take a scene whether it be a landscape or other subject matter and to convey the scene with quick, minimal but careful brushwork, and a limited palette to convey the essence of the subject. My work often leaves much to the viewer’s imagination.

To date, my work has been exhibited at several juried exhibitions including the Carnegie Center for the Arts, Three Rivers, a number of West Michigan Area Shows (WMAS), and the Portage City Hall Annual Exhibition. I have won awards at several of the WMAS and the Carnegie Center and have work in the KIA Permanent Collection. I recently concluded a one man show in Brooklin, ME.

Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition Series 2023: Series 5

September 15 – October 29, 2023

Williams Gallery

Carol L. Myers
Watervliet, MI
Printmaking/Mixed Media

Artist Information

Carol L. Myers is a Printmaker/Mixed Media Artist currently living in Watervliet, MI. She has a public studio in the Box Factory for the Arts and a home studio in Watervliet, overlooking Paw Paw Lake. She has a BFA from the University of Michigan and has studied with many nationally known artists.

Carol is an active member of the Berrien Artists Guild, and the Indiana, Michigan and Chicago chapters of the Women’s Caucus for the Arts. She is also a member of the Surface Design Association, Woman Made Gallery and FUSEDChicago artist group. She also serves as the Curator Gallery Preparator at the South Haven Center for the Arts. Her work has been shown in national and regional juried shows, solo shows, and in several cooperative galleries. Carol has prints in several museum collections and a large quilt “Women, Why do you Weep” displayed in the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital in Indianapolis. She was awarded an Individual Artist Grant from the Indiana Arts Commission in 2000 and served on their grant review panel in 2001. Her work has also been published in Strawberry Moon Magazine and Still Point Arts Quarterly in 2016 and more recently in 2023, Spring Issue.

Artist Statement

Inspired by the drawings in the sketchbook I used as I sat with my daughter in the ICU ten years ago, I have been exploring the idea of grief as a journey. I traveled many days and hours every week to sit with her in the hospital, becoming well acquainted with the landscape between my home in Michigan and Rush and Northwestern Hospitals in Chicago. I use pencil, printmaking with ink and wax and any other medium I might need (watercolor, oil pastel, plaster) to try and capture the many moods of the landscape, both internal and external.

My work explores the internal landscape of spirit. Meditative pencil drawings examine the natural objects that fascinate me: shells, bones, fossils, bare trees and roots…the architecture of nature. These explorations form my personal constellation of image and meaning, and my work spins off from here, becoming richer with time and repetition. I plumb the depths of nature for visual exploration of spirit and healing, creating artistic space for contemplation and meditation: a sacred resting place for the senses. Creating connections is central to my work.

My work invites the viewer into connection with spirit. Intimate and meditative, it creates a sacred space for contemplation. I have always believed in the healing nature of art, weaving creative expression into the fabric of my life. That belief has transformed into a deep knowing that art heals. The process of creation heals me, and I send that healing out into the world with my art.

willams gallery

Whitlow Gallery

“A warm flannel birdhouse in a heavily starched world”

Mark Wagner
St. Joseph, MI

Artist Information

With a reverence for wood and the outdoors, Mark Wagner creates each of his distinctive birdhouses and burl wood vessels out of his home in Niles Michigan. The resulting success can be measured by recent awards won from the Midwest Museum of American Art Juried Regional Exhibition; the Michiana Annual Arts Competition; and the Heartland Artist Gallery Juried Regional Art Exhibit, plus sold in select galleries and fine art shows throughout the United States.

Artist Statement

“A warm flannel birdhouse in a heavily starched world” describes the completely handcrafted, truly one of a kind structures. The wood in these works were chosen for the rarity they have realized over time, transformed by natural processes to develop authentic, aged patinas – some delicate, some robust, all beautiful. The results are delightfully unexpected, unpretentiously comfortable, timelessly styled works of art with an easy fit for one’s outdoor or indoor environment.

whitlow gallery

Skyview Gallery

“Cyanotype-spirit of the sun”

Susan Plee
St. Joseph, MI

Artist Information

Susan is a graduate of St. Joseph. She received an AA Degree in Fashion Design and Early Childhood Education while living in California. Susan has been an Berrien Artist Guild member since 1997 and a Krasl docent since 2018. She currently has a studio at The Box Factory.

The cyanotype process was developed in 1854 by Sir John Herchel. The cyano reaction produces the cyan-blue pigment ferric ferricyanide (also known as Prussian blue) a pigment found in many high-end watercolors, oil and acrylic paints. Susan discovered the art process from a Krasl workshop by artist Casey Roberts and began experimenting with different objects on treated watercolor paper. It’s a reminder of how we all leave a print of our lives, personalized and one of kind.

cyanotype art

Riverwalk Gallery

“Wild Ferment”

Hank Mattson
Laguna Niguel, California

Artist Information

Hank Mattson is a painter and printmaker who has spent most of his life in the American Southwest. He earned a BFA in painting from Northern Arizona University and studied abroad at the Siena School for Liberal Arts. A prolific artist, Hank’s body of work spans a variety of styles and subjects, always painted in bold, expressive color. When not painting, Hank can be found teaching at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, skateboarding, and spending time with his wife and cat in Kalamazoo.

Artist Statement

I use still life as means of painterly transformation. Objects are carefully considered and then reinvented in paint. This passage through the artist vivifies the objects, allowing the viewer to interact with the mundane imbued with character and vitality. Like a jar of fermenting pickles on the counter: sitting still but brimming with activity.

The objects in play are paraphernalia of the artist’s life: a collision of 1.) the traditional: art books and anatomical figures, 2.) the digital: camera and computer as ubiquitous as brush and paint in the studio of the modern artist, and 3.) the practical: meat tenderizer and tomato corer, upon which the artist’s source of income relies. Repetition of subject matter has allowed me to describe the many facets of these objects. Direct observation begins to mingle with personal association, unconstrained by realism. The intersection of these elements creates a self-portrait through still life.

In painting this series, I intentionally expanded my visual language. The compositions have been carefully curated to give the viewer room for contemplation. The color was discovered intuitively as I painted. Like the objects, it blends the traditional and digital age: subtle value shifts with high-key modern pop. The brushwork is direct and visible, a dance of the surreal and expressive.

The color was discovered intuitively as I painted. Like the objects, it blends the traditional and digital age: subtle value shifts with high-key modern pop. The brushwork is direct and visible, a dance of the surreal and expressive.


Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition Series 2023: Series 4

July 14 – September 10, 2023

Williams Gallery

Kate Welke
Kalamazoo, MI

Artist Information
Born in Kalamazoo, Kate Welke was raised in Stevensville, Michigan and Varese, Italy. She studied fine art and graduated from Kalamazoo College. After living and working in New Zealand and Seattle, she returned to Michigan where she began sweeping the floors of a wood shop. Generous time and instruction by mentors gave her experience in the design and craftsmanship of furniture, in addition to training at the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship in Rockport, Maine. The pursuit of beautiful form and function grew into a design studio, founded alongside her twin sister Karly. Theave Design is the point of intersection between Kate and Karly’s work in craft, interiors, textiles and art.

Artist Statement
Kate’s work is preoccupied with ritual, balance, the dream of time. The habit of line and consideration of color is an exploration of place— the width and depth of it. Recent work is interested in layers and interruptions. Just as in life and craft, Kate’s paintings are adorned by Karly’s embroidery.

Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition kate welke artist

Whitlow Gallery
“Pivot Point, abstract, modern quilts”

Denise Tackett
Stevensville, MI

Artist Information
I’ve been a quilter for nearly 25 years, but during the recent pandemic I was able to take the time to study Abstract Expressionist painters. I thought I could try to translate some of the principles of that art form to quilts. Obviously, fabric doesn’t move like paint, but using improvisational piecing, which is a form of using flexible patterning, instead of traditional fixed patterning, I think I was able to come pretty close.

Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition “Pivot Point, abstract, modern quilts”

Skyview Gallery
“Real Life in Storybook Fashion”

Susan Henshaw
Union Pier, MI

Artist Information
As a lifetime resident of Union Pier, Michigan, Susan resides with her husband and her pets in her childhood home which has been her inspiration for many of her works. As a child, she had free reign to explore the fields, woodlands, waters and plant life that surrounded the property. On solitary journeys, she would also venture to the Galien River and Lake Michigan.

Susan knew she always wanted to be an artist and is still striving to achieve that dream. She is grateful to her parents who were always encouraging and allowed her to make artistic messes! Susan has extensive body of work including photography, oil, pastel, drawing and acrylic.

A self-taught artist, Susan has taught numerous classes and held many solo shows. She is part of several permanent corporate and private collections. Over the years she has received many juried awards for her Pastels and Paintings. Recently, she received Best of Show at Midwest Museum of American Art in Elkhart, IN. Susan’s pastel titled “Primordial River” was the first ever pastel to be chosen in the show’s 35 year history, and is now part of their permanent collection. Susan has also had the honor of being chosen as an Artist-in-Residence at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Porcupine Mountains State Park and Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.

Artist Statement
After many years of painting aspects of nature in oils and pastels I hit a creative wall. For 2 years I did not paint anything seriously but began to experiment with acrylics and abstract – without any expectations. What I discovered blew my mind! I saw shapes and figures within the abstracts. I can only describe it as a cross between the Rorschach Test, Where’s Waldo and Dot to Dot. Like seeing images in the clouds the characters took shape forming complete stories. Some pieces had stories on multiple sides of the canvas but when the piece named itself that would be the image I painted.

I have not added any characters nor have I modified their actions. Every line and shape formed organically within the abstract background acting as a road map to the story.

I refer to these pieces as “Real Life in Story Book Fashion” They are a reflection of the interactions with ourselves and others. The stories range from sweet to tongue in cheek to very dark, mirroring our achievements and failures as a society…

Every day the world changes. Every day I am a different person. Every day I am a different artist.

Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition

Riverwalk Gallery
“Poetic Licenses”

Greg Constantine
Berrien Center, MI
Mixed Media

Artist Information
Greg taught painting, drawing, and art history at Andrews University for forty-three years (1963-2006) while conducting fifteen art history summer sessions for students in Europe. He began exhibiting nationally in in 1969, and since 1975, numerous one man shows including eighteen in New York City. The focus of his professional career has clearly been the exhibiting of his art in New York City, and as a result, a moderate reputation developed.

Born in Windsor Ontario, attended Andrews University and Michigan State University he’s been married to Sharon for 63 years.

Artist Statement
The license plate format is that of utilitarian objects transformed into functional objects wearing the mantle of “High Art”. They open another territory in the development of Text Art. Most viewers, when confronted by these groupings, will at first see a random juxtaposition of weathered automobile plates from various countries and states. They refer to the phenomenon of ubiquitous so-called “vanity” plates, with the exception that these have been grouped together to form full statements. While it may appear that Constantine has simply collected old, rusted license plates to create this text art, he actually fabricates them from vacuum-formed styrene (plastic), then paints and rusticates the pieces.

Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition art exhibit dine in real ancestors

Michiana Annual Art Competition

MAAC in the Box Exhibition
May 19 – July 9, 2023

All Four Galleries

The Michiana Annual Art Competition, MAAC, is a local juried fine art exhibition intended to recognize, foster, and reward excellence of artists in Southwest Michigan and Northern Indiana. The MAAC is held annually at the Box Factory for the Arts in St. Joseph, Michigan and is supported by our association members, area businesses, and corporate sponsors.

The Community was invited to this free and public gallery exhibition located throughout the Box Factory for the Arts’ 4 Galleries. Works of Art Categories are: Photography, Watermedia, Oil, Fiber Arts, 3D, Drawing and the 2023 Pop-up Category: Zine/Poster/Illustration (Digital- Book Arts/Letterpress).

The Category winners are:

  • Eliza Sarra, St. Joseph – Drawing – “Birds of Flight”
  • Julie Koch – Benton Harbor – Fiber Arts – “Flower Garden”
  • Matt Payovich – St. Joseph – Oil Painting – “Ellis”
  • Sara Sokol – Stevensville – 3D – “Intuition”
  • Sherry Saenz – South Haven – Black and White Photography – “Natural Abstract”
  • Mary Whalen – Richland, MI – Color Photography – “Summer Garden”
  • David Baker – St. Joseph – Water Media – “Between the Water and the Sky”
  • Mary Whalen – Richland, MI – Pop-Up/Zine/Poster/Illustration – “World of Wonders”

Second Place awards go to:

  • Laurie Rousseau – South Bend, IN – Drawing – “Vanate”
  • T.J. Schwartz – St. Joseph – Fiber Arts – “The Stories I Was Told”
  • Robert Williams – Stevensville – Oil Painting – “Bella in Green Shirt”
  • Michele Corazzo – Chesterton, IN – 3D – “Sextet”
  • Nolan Tackett – St. Joseph, – Black and White Photography – “Tetons”
  • Surekka Ninala – Berrien Springs – Color Photography -“Sandstone Palace”
  • Nathan Margoni – Benton Harbor – Water Media – “Golden Boy”
  • Betsy Gill – St. Joseph – Pop-Up/Zine/Poster/Illustration – “Nevertheless Blooming”


Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition Series 2023: Series 2

Community Art Exhibitions from
Elementary, Middle School and High School area students

March 10 – April 30, 2023

Riverwalk, Whitlow and Williams Galleries

The Elementary Art Exhibition and Middle & High School ‘Community Student Art Exhibitions’ provide important opportunities for school children from Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren Counties to exhibit their artwork at The Box Factory for the Arts.

Together with Krasl Art Center (KAC) and the Berrien Regional Education Services Agency (RESA) we annually celebrated these young artists and award many for their excellence.

The 2023 ‘Community Art Exhibition’ were sponsored by Stonegate Plastic Surgery of Corewell Health with contributions additionally provided by Barrett & Driscoll Pediatrics, Vail Rubber Works, and Pepsi Bottling Group. Framing sponsored by Waterfront Framing & House of Fashion.

Program support additionally provided in part by Michigan Arts and Culture Council, National Endowment for the Arts, and Frederick S. Upton Foundation.

emerging artist

Box Factory for the Arts Exhibition Series 2023: Series 1

January 20 – February 26, 2023

Riverwalk, Whitlow and Williams Galleries

Materials from the natural world surrounding the Northwest Indiana home and studios of Jon Hook and Andrea Peterson find their way into their clay art and works on paper. “stories from the soil” was the theme of the couple’s exhibit which originally opened January 20 in the Robert Williams Gallery at the Box Factory for the Arts, 1101 Broad Street, St. Joseph, MI.

In addition, the family of the late Box Factory studio artist K.V. Rathnam honored their patriarch with an exhibit of his photography and paintings in the Whitlow Gallery.

Orphaned artwork which has been unclaimed by artists and accumulating in various storage spaces at the Box Factory were offered for sale in the Sky Level Gallery.

And Box Factory studio artists showcased their work and bios in the Riverwalk Gallery.