Spotlight on Members

If you are a Member and have a solo exhibition, award, or special art project, send your news to ocalaartgroup1950@gmail.com

Marcelle Schvimmer – Capturing essence though portraiture


Ocala Gazette article by Julie Garisto posted August 12, 2022

Artist Marcelle Schvimmer knows how to bring out the character of her subjects. When Marcelle Schvimmer isn’t playing mah-jongg and assisting her mother, she’s painting portraits of people and pets, capturing that spark or penetrating gaze that reveals their very essence.

The portraitist’s works are currently showing in exhibits at the Marion Cultural Alliance’s Brick City Center for the Arts, Ocala Art Group’s “Summer Art Show” and in galleries on the East Coast as well as the Citrus County community of Hernando’s new A Cracker Canvas.

Schvimmer’s uncanny ability to convey character and personal details draws viewers in, which is why a portrait of her mother, Helen Newman, is so striking. “Time Well Spent,” shows Mrs. Newman at 97, seated and passing the hours with one of her favorite activities, putting a puzzle together. The painting is part of the “The Art of Aging: The Secret of Life” exhibit for artists 55 and older at the MCA’s Brick City Center for the Arts through Aug. 27.

Her winning painting, “Rising Harvest,” in the Ocala Art Group’s show at South State Bank depicts a couple who work at a family farm stand by the same name. “I buy my vegetables and fruits at Rising Harvest,” Schvimmer said. “One day I asked the husband and wife working at the family farm (Josh and Trish Wise) if they would pose for me. I just found them very interesting, nice to look at. They were sitting back to back and giggling. It took them a while to stop laughing.”

Born in 1947 in Orange County, New Jersey, Schvimmer grew up in North Brunswick around a big, boisterous family. “In those days you didn’t just have ‘nuclear family,’” she reminisced. “We must have had a hundred, relatives nearby, and we were always at some aunt or uncle’s house and with our cousins.”

Though Schvimmer didn’t grow up in a stereotypical bohemian, artistic household, there was no shortage of creativity. Her dad was a builder and mom had a way with needlepoint. “It’s in our genes,” she said with a laugh, adding that one of her granddaughters is a professional artist based in Philadelphia. Another writes plays and screenplays in California.

Family is a big part of Schvimmer’s life. She’s been married for 53 years to attorney Ted Schvimmer, and the artist recently moved her mother two blocks away. She helps her art between activities with the Ocala Art Group and other local organizations.

Though she requires assistance, Mrs. Newman is still sharp despite having some difficulties getting around. “You know, people will look at you and they’ll see you, but they really don’t know you as well as your mother does,” Schvimmer added with a tinge of emotion. “The way she’s looking at me is more telling than if she were looking at somebody else. It’s hard to explain, but your mother can see through you where another person can’t.”

Contact Marcelle Schvimmer at mschvimmer@gmail.com for portrait commissions. See more of her works at fineartamerica.com/profiles/marcelle-schvimmer. Current exhibits showing her works include Ocala Art Group’s Summer Art Show at South State Bank, through Sept. 28; and Marion Cultural Center’s Brick City Center for the Arts through Aug. 27. She’s also exhibiting at A Cracker Canvas in Hernando

Mary Haley-Rocks – Art Display in Local Restaurant

Mary Haley-Rocks has her art on display at Cheers Restaurant in Stonecrest until July 31st. Hurry in to see her beautiful art!

Congratulations to Mary Haley-Rocks!

Congratulations are in order to new member Mary Haley-Rocks!!!! She entered a beautiful painting at the recent Marion Theatre Fine Arts Show and sold her beautiful painting: “Field of Poppies”.

Congratulations also for our zealous member Iris Kaplan for her dedication for making this such an impressive venue for OAG! Be sure to drop in to see this lovely fun show! It just goes to show us what we can do when creating
outside of our “comfort zone”! Thanks all!

Field of Poppies – Mary Haley-Rocks

WooHoo! Ronda Richley- Solo Exhibition

at Ocean Art Gallery, Ormond Beach

Congratulations to Iris Kaplan

Iris was awarded Honorable Mention for her acrylic painting, “Look, Seek, and Find” entered in the Visual Arts Association’s Winter 2022 La Galleria Fine Arts Show & Sale. 

The Winter 2022 La Galleria Fine Arts Show & Sale is located in the La Hacienda Regional Rec Center. 1200 Avenida Central.  The exhibit will hang until March 12, 2022 and features 29 original works by Village’s artists.  The works are available for sale by contacting the artist directly.

The Judge is Artist & Educator, Frank Zampardi, a retired secondary school art educator who taught in public schools for thirty-two years. Frank’s work has been exhibited in numerous art venues in his home state of New York and in Florida.  Since moving to The Villages, Florida, Frank has continued to garner awards at events in and around The Villages.  Come out and judge for yourself.  Everyone is invited to visit the Winter La Galleria Fine Arts Show 2022 which is open to the public and free of charge during regular rec center hours.


Congratulations to Cindy Vener!

Cindy Vener, OAG member, joined the Acrylic Painters USA this year and entered a painting for the competition. It juried into the show!!! Yipee!!! Congratulations on our first entry, first win in this prestigious organization, Cindy!
The show will be hung at the Manatee Art Center, Bradenton with an opening reception on October 28, 2021, from 5 to 7 pm.  The show runs October 26, 2021 through November 19, 2021. 

On the Rocks y Cindy Vener 32″ x 26″ Acrylic on Yupo

Congratulations to Sharon Harris!

Sharon Harris. past-president of OAG, was accepted for the third year into the nationally juried art exhibition sponsored by Acrylic Painters USA.  The judge was Tony Ortego, MFA University of Colorado and a professor of art at Regis University, Colorado. Two acceptances allowed status as a Signature Member of this national organization. 

The show will be hung at the Manatee Art Center, Bradenton with an opening reception on October 28, 2021, from 5 to 7 pm.  The show runs October 26, 2021 through November 19, 2021. 

Fun with Paint by Sharon Harris

Congratulations to Sharon Repple!

Sharon Repple’s painting Angel Trumpet Call was juried into the Acrylic Painters USA.
Artist Tony Ortega served as the juror for this exhibition.
Sharon Repple is a signature member of ISAP and APUSA.

Acrylic Painters USA
ArtCenter Manatee – Bradenton, FL
APUSA Curated Exhibit – October 26 – Nov 19, 2021
Opening Reception: October 28, 2021, 5 – 7 pm

Angel Trumpet Call by Sharon Repple (24″x 18″)
About Acrylic Painters USA

In 2006, a group of acrylic painters located in the Tampa Bay area founded an acrylic painters association (formerly ISAP-FL). This group is now Acrylic Painters USA Inc. The goal of the organization is to build a strong community of acrylic painters and to provide exhibition opportunities throughout the state of Florida. 


Kelley Batson-Howard Exhibit
Opening Reception October 6, 2021

Kelley Batson-Howard has a solo show recently hung at Plaza Lincoln in Leesburg through a collaboration with Leesburg Center for the Arts in their new venue CFA Plaza located there. Opening Reception will be October 6th, 5:30-7 PM Congratulations, Kelley!


Janice was born and raised in New York State and attended college at the University of Rochester. There she met and married the love of her life, Bob. They lived for 4 years in Wyoming, then moved to Pennsylvania where they lived for 40 years. During that time period they raised three daughters, and Janice went to medial school and then practiced as a Family Physician. When they retired and moved to Florida, Janice started attending art classes in The Villages, FL where they live, and fell in love with watercolor. Her work tends to be realistic, because she finds beauty in the world as it is, but she is beginning to move into being slightly more impressionistic and more discerning in composition. Her work so far is limited to watercolor, watercolor and ink, graphite and Conte crayons. She especially likes watercolor because she loves how it flows and mixes. There are infinite possibilities with watercolor! Most of the paintings are original paintings, but she is branching out to offer prints and giclees. Some of the paintings are her versions of paintings of other artists who gave permission for their work to be copied. Many of the paintings, especially the more recent works, are from photos taken while traveling, another of her loves. Still others are just “made up”. She also does portraits of children, adults, and “fur babies” on commission. She belongs to Ocala Art Group, Villages Art Association, and Villages Art League. 

For years, Sharon Repple’s paintings have been seen in Mount Dora at Renninger’s Antique Mall in Florida Faience Gallery on The Street of Shops. Recently, she joined a new gallery in Wildwood, FL.  Jill Goden opened Jill’s Unique Creations at 819 S Main Street a couple of months ago.


Venetian Gardens! By Linda DeLuca

Linda DeLuca

Linda DeLuca, OAG member, recently completed this mural of Venetian Gardens. The mural was painted inside the Morrison Opportunity Thrift Shop in Leesburg. Linda generously gave of her time and talent to paint this beautiful artwork for the Thrift Shop.