Old Town Art Center: The Legendary Chicago Society of Artists “A 135-Year Legacy Continues” Old Town Triangle Association Chicago 6/28-8/5 2022


“From Jarlshof Pasture” manipulated photo infused on metal 24″ X 30 ” C. 2021 David Bechtol
“Broken Wings” digitalpaint/photo on infused metal plate framed 16″x16″ c.2022 Nancy Bechtol
“Renascence for Edna ” (detail) color laser print on paper with edges hand colored.10″x8″ c. 2022 James McNeill Mesple’


~ David Bechtol ~ James McNeill Mesple’

~ Nancy Bechtol

The Leslie Wolfe Gallery

1763 N North Park Ave 60614
proudly presents the legendary CSA

Exhibition | June 28 through August 5, 2022 Gallery Hours | Tuesday – Friday 10 AM – 5 PM | Saturday 10 AM – 1 PM

The Chicago Society of Artists is a non-profit organization established in 1887. Now well into its second century, CSA is the oldest continuing artist association in the United States. Early members of the Chicago Society of Artists including John Vanderpoel, Ivan Albright, Frances Badger, and LeRoy Neiman, established and maintained high standards for membership that continue today. Much of CSA’s renown is due to member versatility which includes painters, graphic artists, printmakers, photographers, sculptors, art critics, gallery owners, and art educators. After 135 years, CSA continues to play a significant role in the arts by providing opportunities for artists to share their art production and experiences through a continuing series of exhibitions and educational programming.

All Invited to view this historic group show. Artists in exhibition:

Jose Agustin Andreu, Jon W. Balke, Norman Baugher, David Bechtol, Nancy Bechtol, Shel Howard Beugen, Kathryn A. Budd, Catherine Cajandig, Barbara Eberhard, Anne Farley Gaines, Kathryn Gauthier, Corrie-Lou Livingston Glass, Sandra Holubow, Nikkole Huss, Patricia Coffman Huss, Robert J. Johnson, Gregorio Mejia, James McNeill Mesple’, BettyAnn Mocek, Jacqueline Moses, Donna Nevels, Didier Nolet, Deanna Withers Rallins, Sandra Reibscheid, Gloria Rigoni, Robert Schiltz, Jack Siegel, Jane Stevens, Michael Veltman, John Pitman Weber, Richard Werle, William F. Whiteside, Pat Wright


David Bechtol Artist Statement


Photography is an integral part of my life. Each image captured attempts to take the viewer on a journey, to transport them to that place of wonder and grandeur as I experienced it, to feel the sense of awe, beauty and peacefulness.
As a boy growing up in rural Michigan, I had many chances to take long, slow walks in the forest, soaking in all the beauty a child sees in nature. Now I use photography to slow down life and try to take in all that nature has to offer as I once did those many years ago.
I am a self-taught photographer and have studied the photographic process for over 40 years. My interests include the digital realm where my technical background lets me exploit all that the camera can capture.
Throughout my travels, I try to bring back and share a vision of some of the awe-inspiring vistas I encounter. No matter where you are in the world, nature’s extraordinary beauty is around every corner.
I believe that great images are always around us. They are ours to capture with our vision and share with the world.


James Mesple’ Artist Statement

This painting was inspired by the poem “Renascence” by Edna St. Vincent Millay. Ancient Myths, Poetry, and Music inspire my visionary, narrative paintings. As a child, my maternal grandfather told me stories drawn from his Osage (Native American) heritage, creating a bridge to the Classical world, since both cultures are animistic seeing Spirits in everything.


Nancy Bechtol Artist Statement

Chicago woman artist whose work spans several media, decades and styles. This work has natural formations but you also get the sense of the urban. They contain their own universe. You see an intensity .
Earlier in her career, she studied painting with Don Baum, artist and curator, and was influenced by the Hairy Who, and the Chicago Imagists. With an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, she was inspired and mentored by pioneering video artist Phil Morton, founder of the Video Area. “My art is really a mixed bag. I adapt to whatever works for the concept. I work in digital media, photography and video, both experimental and documentary style. As an artist I often reinvent myself.”


All Welcome to Visit the Exhibition!

Chicago’ “Free Speech..”Film Thanks:..a painfully gritty true story

Chicago ‘Free Speech’ Film thanks: a painfully gritty true story

FILM-_Bechtol_Logan-BIGPOSTER-WEBxAll_Posters_Lobby_-Logan-Theatre-Bechtol_Post-Image11.14.14 Marked Chicago and World Premiere of “Free Speech & the Transcendent Journey of Chris Drew, Street Artist” screened at the Logan Theatre. Local is best. Special thanks To the media the Reader, Sun-Times, Logan TV and DNAinfo, Chicago Talks, Mark Thomas of the Alley Stores for the great collector buttons given at the premiere, and all those who blogged and grassroots rallied to support this journey and NOW indie feature film. You are the best! The thank you list is a good 3 pages long on the film credits, several of Chris Drew’s former students were there, Lew & Diana – with beautiful flyers and ongoing People’s Tribune tributes to Chris, as well as his widow Deborah, attorney Mark Weinberg, and (includes spiritual advisors and inspirations) John Lennon, Martin Luther King and Gandhi, his probono attorneys Weinberg and Kutnick, Music courtesy of Hey Now Records/’Paper Airplane’, by Behind the Sun-Alton & Mansfield, ( along with the ACLU, APA, CANTV, Occupy Critical Mass and our Public Servants(who legally can and will be recorded in public), and more. so many more…all listed in the film ) Special thanks to the crew who supported the film Ron Grenko and Hermann Wieland, and David Bechtol, Technical Supervisor and fixer of all things, without him this film would not have been made. Thanks for all who were there in person and in spirit! an excellent audience, we nearly filled the 102 seat theatre. very well attended! What an experience to see so many people and, most I did not know… that was amazing. The film is now for history, forever.

above, is the Poster in lobby next to all the REAL movies! 27×39″ mine is 2nd from the left….”into the woods” ah yes, the journey was long to make this DIY indie, but worth every joy and sorrow, those who make films, know deeply what I mean. Peace through Justice. May the Chris Drew story of social justice radiate. The truth IS out there. Art IS Speech! In any way you can, tell the stories of our lives. ~Nancy Bechtol

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