Our Gallery Artist…
During the run of The Language Archive, from January 26 through February 11, 2024, the paintings by Samuel J. Francazio will be on display in our lobby.
In the 1970’s, Samuel studied art at Adrian College, Adrian, Michigan, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts with a concentration in painting and pottery. In succeeding years, he married and raised a family, and worked construction to pay his bills. He put his passion for creating art on the back burner.
When Samuel retired from construction work in 2008, he began experimenting with his creativity, and began photography and attending pottery classes. He then became inspired to begin painting again, and have been enjoying networking with other artists by attending art exhibits, visiting studios, and making contact with artists world wide on social media. Samuel has recently exhibited in local galleries such as Wasmer Gallery of Ursuline College, Fairmount Center for the Arts, Artist Archives of Western Reserve, Bruno Casino Gallery, CWAL, Rocky River Nature Center, Lakeland Community College, and Gallery Plus at the West 78th St. Studios.
The Clague Playhouse Lobby Gallery is open during Box Office hours, Wednesday through Saturday 1-6PM and one hour before performances on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8PM and Sunday at 2PM.

We are happy to showcase local artists in our Lobby Gallery.  If you are interested in displaying your artwork, please call the Box Office at 440-331-0403 or contact GalleryArtist@ClaguePlayhouse.org.

Artists from our 2023-2024 Season…

Thomas V. Gardner – September 15 – October 8, 2023

Cleveland native Thomas V. Gardner (1930-2003) raised seven children with his wife Patricia after service in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. A lover of all things handheld and manual, his hobbies included carpentry, target shooting, and photography. His home on Frank Street in North Olmsted, a short drive from the Clague Playhouse, included a backyard woodworking shop and basement darkroom where he developed his own photography.
All examples come from the private collection of Andrew Hanwell, one of Thomas’s many grandchildren. Andrew fondly remembers him as “the classic grandpa, in the best possible way. Thick glasses, checkered shirts, weekly visits to our home with Entenmann donuts, tea, and good conversation. Truly one of the greats.”

Artists from our 2022-2023 Season…

Gary Aheimer and Dottie Palazzo – September 16 – October 14, 2022

Gary Aheimer
Gary Aheimer and his wife, Marie, have been donors for several years and have volunteered in various activities, including working with a Board committee to update the Code of Regulations. A couple years ago, before Covid, Gary decided to dabble in painting when he signed up for art classes at the Senior Center. While dabbling he discovered a great love for painting and quite a talent.
During the Covid shutdown Gary experimented with different paints, different application utensils and fun concepts. He will display a selection of his unique masterpieces and, since he will be including descriptions of how he did it, it will be quite educational and inspiring.
Dottie Palazzo
Dottie Palazzo comes from parents, George DeWald and Olive Rade DeWald, both artistically talented: George in painting, wood carving, and being an excellent and sought after sandstone mason. Olive in her needlework, including doing work for interior designers in New England.
Dottie took oil painting lessons as a lark years ago with a group of clients at a Fairview Park hair salon. Not any kind of serious lessons as Gary is taking. But just enough to teach her some fundamentals, how to handle the paint and a brush, and to whet her appetite for painting. She recently retrieved two of her paintings from her daughter in Utah and decide that at this ripe old age it is time to celebrate her work.
Both of these artists have a love for bright colors, so this is going to be a bright, colorful and happy event.

Paul Johanni – Jan. 20 – Feb. 12, 2023

A Westlake resident for the past 52 years, Paul is happy to share his art with the audiences of Clague Playhouse.
After retiring from a successful career teaching social sciences at John Marshall High School in Cleveland, Ohio, Paul discovered another exciting source of happiness, “The World of Art”. Over the past 21 years Paul has taken the art of “pine needle stitchery” from traditional baskets to free form three-dimensional art. Nature’s garden has given him simple fibers like fallen pine needles, dried grasses, soft clay, fascinating glazes, and funky wood which he fashions into functional structures and whimsical, free-form sculptures. Having no formal education in art or natural sciences and therefore none of the learned restraints, his journey is an exciting adventure of exploration, discovery and creation. He searches for materials that can be married with the pine needle stitchery into complimentary partnerships. His collection of works has been exhibited in numerous one man shows and has won many awards in juried art shows. His free spirit is represented in his work.

Participants in the Carolyn L. Farrell Foundation Arts Enrichment – March 17 – April 8, 2023

These pieces are by individuals affected by dementia/Alzheimer’s and their primary care partners. Programs are at the Center for Artful Living in Westlake. Visit their website: farrellfoundation.org or call: 440-414-0434 for information about their programs or artwork.

Joe McChrystal – May 12 – June 4, 2023

Joe McChrystal…aka Joe McArtist…is a local self-taught abstract expressionist oil painter…he keeps it loose, raw, instinctual and experimental…an attempt to organize the chaos of life into the mystery of Art. Joe displays and sells at River Reserve Interior in Rocky River, Frames Unlimited in Westlake and Tremont establishments. He is a member of Virginia Casscarellas Artist in Bloom Ministry of Bay Village.

Artists from our 2021-2022 Season…

“Kramer Productions” – September 10 – October 3, 2021

This collection is comprised of the paintings of the late Kevin “Buzz” Kramer (1949-1986), his late son, photographer, Jesse Kramer (1970-2015), and the watercolors of Stephanie Kramer, wife of Kevin and mother of Jesse.
Buzz Kramer attended the Cleveland Institute of Art and was a commercial artist in Cleveland from 1970-1986.
Jesse Kramer graduated from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and was a well-respected portrait photographer in Cleveland. His photos were featured in Cleveland Magazine, Ohio Magazine and others, and his portrait studio in Lakewood captured the whimsey of numerous children.
Stephanie Kramer is self-taught and is an alumnus of Clague Playhouse.

Ellyn Kilpatrick – March 11 – April 3, 2022

Ellyn is a local artist who focuses on oil painting and illustration. Her work stems from her love of fantasy and morbid subjects. Through her desire to beckon the viewer into the land of fantasy, she illustrates characters from these worlds as well as getting inspiration from tales of old.
With the story of the Radium Girls, she wanted to show a more elegant view of the morbidity of the time.
Ellyn currently has a small business with her friend designing stickers on Etsy known as Awkward Curiosities.


Sophia Lynch – May 6-29, 2022

Sophia’s wide variety of art ranges from cards to paintings, to pencil art. She’s had a passion for art and creating for a long time, but her fire for creating really blossomed during her teenage years, when she began to study art and practice drawing and various forms of painting. Sophia honed her skills during the past few years, and her career truly soared in late 2020, when she started her business – To God’s glory arts – and began to sell cards for different holidays.
Sophia now uses her business to sell cards, paintings, and custom works, and has been attending different craft shows and art showcases in the Northeastern Ohio area to promote her work for the past year. You can find more of her work on Facebook at To God’s Glory arts, and on Instagram at To God’s Glory arts.

Artists from our 2019-2020 Season…

Robert Parry – September 13 until October 13, 2019

Robert has a BFA degree from and a Master’s in City and Regional Planning from The Ohio State University. A career in City Planning for 40 years included work in private planning consulting firms, as a Deputy Director of Cuyahoga Regional Planning Commission and as the Director of Planning and Economic Development for the City of Westlake, a position he held for 26 years retiring in 2012.

Over the last decade Robert has rekindled his interest in the arts and has focused on painting, mostly in Watercolor painting, but also in Oil painting and Photography. He has trained in classes at the Beck Centers and Bay Arts and is a member of the Aquarelle Watercolor Society. Robert has displayed paintings in many local and regional art shows as well as juried shows at Bay Arts and Community of Fine Arts winning many awards for his work.

Nancy Sestili – January 17 – February 9, 2020

Nancy has always been interested in art and painting but once her family came along, she put away her brushes.
About 12 years ago, she began painting with Lori Daugstrup at Daugstrup Fine Art in Rocky River.
Nancy is from Lorain and most recently displayed her works at Bay Arts.