Alley for a gallery

Garage art comes to Forest Park with first annual Gar Art

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By Jean Lotus

Forest Park Review Editor

Who needs to go gallery hopping when you can just slide open the overhead door on a Forest Park garage? A local woman hopes to show that amateur cover bands aren't the only artists that can be creative in the garage.

Original artwork, vintage handmade furniture and music will transform several garages in the alley east of the 1000 block of Marengo in Forest Park's first Gar Art garage art gallery show Saturday, Aug. 23.

Amy Turilli, a painter, returned from a foray outside Los Angeles to her sister JoAnne's Forest Park home with a slew of canvases and a desire to meet and hang out with other artists.

 "I wanted to have an open studio tour, but I'm working up in my sister's attic and who wants people tramping through the house," Turilli said. 

"I told myself I'm going to organize a garage art gallery tour this summer and I'm finally doing it," she added. "I think it's a really cool idea."

Three garages on Marengo will participate, with nibbles, artworks and music, Turilli said.  A neighbor who collects rare LPs will be spinning records, she said. 

Garage owner JoAnne Turilli, who's lived on the corner for more than four years, is herself an artist and creates folk art designs from common objects such as garden tools.

The sisters will make it a family affair by also displaying some vintage hand-carved furniture and woodworking made by their late grandfather, an Italian immigrant, who worked as a cabinet maker for Goldblatts department stores in Chicago. 

Wood carver Dominic Turilli came to the United States in 1917 and lived in West Garfield Park near Adams and Pulaski, Amy said. She will display some family treasures he carved by hand including decorative chair designs and inlay. 

"They're family treasures that are never seen outside our family," Turilli said. 

She's sprinkled postcards and flyers in Ed's Way and American Artworks Gallery on Madison Street, she said. 

"I want as many artists as I can reach to take part," Turilli said. "If you're out on your walk that evening, stop by and see some artwork."

If You Go: garART art walk, alley 1000 block of Marengo Aug. 23, 2014. Overhead doors up 6 – 9 p.m. Free. Details at: 

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