December 01, 2022 - January 15, 2023
  • Oglebay Institute's Towngate Theatre & Cinema
    2118 Market Street
    Wheeling, WV 26003
  • 304-242-7700
  • Hours
    Mon-Fri: 11:00am-1:00pm and during all events

The Gallery at Towngate is proud to host “Wide Open Spaces,” an exhibit by Cheryl Ryan Harshman.

The exhibit is on display through January 15. The Gallery at Towngate is open 11am-1pm Monday through Friday and during all events.

An opening reception takes place Thursday, December 1 from 6-8pm.

Artist Statement

I come from a long line of people who make things—brick masons, painters, needle workers, potters, gardeners—and like them, I must make things. Whether it’s a pie from scratch, a new shirt, or a pair of socks, I love making something from nothing, making it all my own.

For me it is the problem solving, putting the puzzle pieces together, exploring the “what if’s” of creating that are so thrilling. Whether I work in fiber or clay or paint or all at the same time, I need to see what will happen next. Each stitch, each mark, each brushstroke changes the work, moves it in another direction, maybe even away from where I thought I was taking the work. And those changes in direction, those whole new worlds of possibility are infinitely exhilarating to me. I am driven to discover where the work itself will lead.

About the Artist

Cheryl Ryan Harshman wears several hats, sometimes all at the same time. Professionally, she has been a librarian for more decades than she would like to admit, first as a children’s librarian and later the director of a university library. Her early years in the library world were centered on children and books for children. Those stories helped launch her writing career. She is the author of four books for children, including Sally ArnoldRed Are the Apples, and Christmas Morning.

More recently, Cheryl has turned from the black and white world of libraries and books to the full color world of making art. She started her years of making as a girl with needle and thread, first as a seamstress and then as an art quilter. A workshop on clay mono printing changed her life. Her clay monoprints have won berths in numerous regional juried exhibits including Crosscurrents at Oglebay Institute, the West Virginia Juried Biennial and Tamarack’s Best of West Virginia. Her paintings have been shown at the Westmoreland Museum of American Art, Greensburg, PA and the Zanesville Museum of Art, Zanesville, OH as well as in local and state juried exhibits. Her work is in private and corporate collections.

In civic affairs, Cheryl serves on the Ohio County Public Library Board.

The Gallery at Towngate

Towngate Theatre is well known in Wheeling and its surrounding communities for community theater productions, children’s theater, concerts, ballet, film screenings, spoken word and other performing arts events. But did you know that Towngate is also an art gallery?

The Gallery at Towngate is a small space gallery that features the work of local and/or emerging artists and focuses on community engagement, inclusion and the mingling of visual and performing arts.

2022-23 Gallery at Towngate Exhibition Schedule:

September 9–November 20: Russ Schultz
December 1–January 15: Cheryl Ryan Harshman
January 21–February 26: West Liberty University Creative Arts Therapy Student Exhibition
March 3–May 21: Ceramic artists Jen Allen & Richard “Duke” Miecznikowski
June 2–August 7: Pamela Cooper