Limited by nothing

By Gus Bode

Joan Levy surprises herself all of the time.

Levy, the 75-year-old artist who was selected as the Rustle Hill Winery artist of the month, said people should not worry about embarrassing themselves to discover talents they may have.

The Cobden winery is scheduled to host a reception of her work from 2 pm. To 5 pm. Sunday, providing an opportunity for people to meet the artist, view her work and hear her music.


‘If I can discover gifts at 75, other people can also,’ Levy said.’ She said it was not until reaching her 70s that she realized she had poetry and jazz singing abilities to explore.

She said it is important for people to take risks to discover their unique talents, which make life more enjoyable.

Levy said the constraints of society’s rules discourages most people from exploring talents that set them apart from the majority, but creative people often have multiple talents.

‘I do not care what kind of creative endeavor you go into, just don’t be afraid to try anything,’ she said.

Painting for her is a way to escape into a joy that is timeless, she said.

‘You can escape all your troubles; they just disappear,’ she said. ‘You are alone in the process of creating.’

Her work deals a lot with fruits and vegetables, said Chris McKinley the event coordinator for Rustle Hill Winery.


‘Her work is a lot of big, beautiful acrylic painting of fruits, and we thought it went along with the season and harvest in southern Illinois,’ she said.

She said it was important that Levy was a well-known local artist as well.

‘She is a far-out lady and does beautiful work,’ said Little Egypt Arts Association member Bonnie Davis from Goreville.

Her work is very bold because of her use of color and composition. Her flowers, fruits and vegetables knock the viewer off the wall, Davis said.

‘Her stuff just blows me away,’ she said. ‘Her work is simply amazing.’