The Owensboro Museum of Fine Art will celebrate the fortieth anniversary of its founding with a gala event, ART BY THE STARS, Saturday, June 10 at the museum.

40 YEARS OF GREAT ART sponsored by Jack Wells Ventures, will feature an auction of art created by community leaders mentored by local artists; live jazz by the Dick Sisto Trio and international cuisine celebrating the geographic scope of the museum’s collection acquired during its first forty years.

Cosponsors of the event are O. Z. Tyler Distillery and Greenwell-Chisholm Printing Company.

“Art Stars” include:

  • developer Jack Wells
  • Judge Joe Castlen
  • City Commissioners Pam Smith Wright and Larry Conder
  • Sheriff Keith Cain
  • County Commissioners George Wathen and Charles Castlen
  • Economic Development Corp. CEO, Madison Silvert
  • Ann Murphy Kincheloe
  • Dr. Marty Traylor
  • Dr. Doug Adams
  • CASA director, Rosemary Conder
  • Owensboro Health executives, Greg Strahan and Steve Johnson
  • Dr. Jim Naas
  • Bill Parrish, City Manager
  • and Billy Reid of Reid’s Orchard

Artists mentoring the stars include:

  • Katie Lowing
  • Ann Bruner
  • Todd Derr
  • Bill Kolok
  • Joe Mills
  • Brian Murphy
  • Joe Overby
  • Enid Roach
  • Rex Robinson
  • Vicky Parrish
  • Rich Phelps
  • and Iris Gentry of Henderson

The Exhibition
The featured exhibition will present on overview of the museum’s American Art collection representing major works in a variety of media from the early 1800’s to the present. Highlights include the collection of celebrated Kentucky artists living and working in Kentucky between 1880 and 1930 such as Paul Sawyier, Frank Duveneck, Carl C. Brenner, Harvey Joiner and Robert Burns Wilson.


Ann Kincheloe (Seated) and Steve Johnson (R) show off their paintings created for the museum’s 40th Anniversary Gala and Auction, scheduled June 10. Local artists, Joe Overby (L) and Katie Lowing (C) mentored the two “Art Stars”.

A special collection documents the Owensboro riverfront from the days of the flatboat to the 20th century envisioned by the late Kentucky artist Harland Hubbard. Commissioned in the late 1960’s by the former Citizens State Bank, Hubbard set up an outdoor studio in Smothers Park and created a collection of paintings depicting the founding of Owensboro to futuristic visions of the waterfront. The collection was gifted to the museum by Chase Bank, the successor of Citizens State Bank.


40 Years
Established in 1977, the Owensboro Museum of Fine Art has developed from a small community museum whose first home was the former Carnegie Library into the second largest in Kentucky. Its large facility at 9th and Frederica Streets now includes two buildings on the National Register of Historic Sites, the pre-Civil War era John Hampden Smith House and the Carnegie Library built in 1909, connected by a post-modern style structure housing an exhibitions wing and sculpture court. A former blighted gas station acquired by the museum has been converted into a public sculpture park commemorating the ancient buffalo trace, now modern day Frederica Street, with a pair of bronze buffalo sculpture.

In its first four decades, the Owensboro Museum of Fine Art has introduced many educational innovations to Owensboro including a collection of world class art; major traveling exhibitions and unique educational opportunities for children. These include the YOUNG AT ART GALLERY, the community’s first children’s gallery; ARTLAND, an interactive studio offering FREE daily art instruction for children; KALEDISCOPE KAVE , a computerized digital gallery and a series of annual art camps offered FREE to the region’s children.

One of the most visible innovations is RIVERARTES: THE ART OF PLACEMAKING a museum project which established a public art collection for the City of Owensboro. RIVERARTES created by a partnership of the museum, the City and community stakeholders, celebrates the sense of place of Owensboro and infuses its cultural tourism efforts with excitement. Twelve works of public art from this project have been installed in the downtown area ensuring community pride and environmental enhancement for the benefit of future generations. This ongoing project calls for additional sculpture to be installed throughout the city in future years.

The public is invited to attend the June 10 gala which is $50 per person or $40 for subscribers to the Friends of the Foundation. Tickets may be purchased on line, by visiting the museum’s website at or by phoning 270 685-3181.

Music by the Dick Sisto Jazz Trio

American, European and Asian delights prepared to complement the international Permanent Collection acquired during the museum’s first four decades.

Master of Ceremonies
Dr. Jim Naas

Kurtz Auction & Realty Co.

The museum is FREE and open to the public six days a week. Hours are noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.