SPRINGFIELD, IL – The rare and rarely-seen poems, artwork, and photographs of Springfield poet Vachel Lindsay will go on view in a temporary exhibition opening September 7 at the Springfield Art Association. The exhibition, Vachel Lindsay: Poet, Artist, Visionary, is being presented in honor of the centennial anniversary of the publication of Lindsay’s Golden Book of Springfield and the bicentennial anniversary of Illinois’ statehood.
Visitors will have the opportunity to see Lindsay family photos, books inscribed by Lindsay, and original examples of Lindsay’s artwork. Notable artifacts on view include a rare photo of Vachel and his sisters, three of whom died in 1888; a hand-drawn sketch of Springfield; and the original painting of “The Wedding of the Rose and the Lotus,” in which Lindsay hand-printed the words to his poem of the same name along the sides.
The exhibition is a collaboration of the Springfield Art Association, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, the Illinois State Museum, the Lincoln Library of Springfield, the Vachel Lindsay Association, the Vachel Lindsay Home State Historic Site, and the Springfield Poets and Writers, each of which contributed artifacts, personnel time, or both to the project.
“We believe this spirit of collaboration would have pleased Lindsay, who was fiercely proud of his hometown and who steadfastly believed that Springfield should be the artistic capital of the United States,” said Erika Holst, Curator of Decorative Arts and History at the Illinois State Museum and curator of the exhibition.
The opening reception takes place on Friday, September 7 from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. and is free and open to the public. The exhibition will remain on view at the Springfield Art Association until September 29.
The Springfield Art Association is located at 700 N. Fourth St. Its hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday, and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. Admission to view the gallery is free. For more information visit www.springfieldart.org or contact 217-523-2631.