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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Nickel Plate preview/ First Friday

The preview party for the Art Fair on the Square and First Friday coincide Friday August first and it looks like this event will be well attended and something not to be missed. The weather will be wonderful for the preview and the fair. The Nickel Plate boys will be on the East side of the square. We are finalizing our plans for our collaborative booth and hope to have many visitors. We are planning to remain on the Square later than the advertised end at 4:00. There is a car show starting at 4:00 which attracts a lot of people.

Please come out and see us!
"The Nickel Plate Boys," four local artists trained in different mediums, work together to make room set-ups to display their artwork at art fairs and conventions. John Bundy (bottom left), John Reynolds, Bruce Neckar (top left) and Greg Adams will set up a living room where each will showcase his artwork. The Times photo by Hannah Troyer

"The Nickel Plate Boys" – John Bundy of Bundy Ducks, Greg Adams of Willow Furniture, pencil artist Bruce Neckar and oil painter John Reynolds -- work together at various conventions and art fairs to create a unique “room set-up” that also acts as a vendor booth for all four artists. Photo provided by Greg Adams
By Hannah Troyer

They waste no time teasing each other and telling jokes when all four of them gather together at the Nickel Plate Arts in downtown Noblesville.

Their chatter almost sounds like that of teenage boys who grew up together. And like many teenage gangs or groups of boys, they have a trademark name. This rowdy group of gentlemen go by "The Nickel Plate Boys."

The group is comprised of four Noblesville artists including John Bundy, 65, of Bundy Ducks; Greg Adams, 67, of Willow Furniture; Bruce Neckar, 64, a pencil artist; and John Reynolds, 69, an oil painter. They will showcase their work at Saturday's Art Fair on the Square in downtown Noblesville.

Reynolds and Adams have known each other since they graduated from Ball State University in Muncie some 40 years ago. Since then, the two artists have reunited and have been collaborating with Neckar and Bundy.

The Nickel Plate Boys work together at various conventions and art fairs to create a unique "room set-up" that also acts as a vendor booth for all four artists.

"I guess what we have is what a person would have as den or a man cave," Bundy said. "When we are all together, it just looks like the ultimate man cave with pictures of wildlife and pictures of animals, ducks and Greg's furniture. It works well together."

The room set-up display idea first came about as a happy accident. Bundy and Adams have done various art shows together. The artists were next to each other at a show. Bundy said that while each man had his own booth, it looked like a room to the public. Since then, the room set-up idea has evolved to include artwork from Neckar and Reynolds.

Adams will display his furniture. Bundy will display his wooden ducks on Adam's furniture. Neckar and Reynolds will display their various artwork pieces on the walls.

Neckar enjoys being able to work with his friends.

"It's comfortable and you don't have to worry about anything," Neckar said. "We're all good friends. The room is an easy set-up. Not one of us is the same, so everything is complimentary. It's nice to work together."

The group has done four or five different room set-ups, including one at the Pendleton Art Fair and even the recent Indianapolis National Rifle Association convention in April.

Some may think that four creative minds with different trades might clash, but the Nickel Plate Boys seem to have no issues. When asked why they enjoyed working with one another, the answer is simple. There is a clear respect for what each man does.

"We all bring different things to the table," Adams said. "It's always nice when someone appreciates your work and we all appreciate each other's. We also help each other."

Besides the Nickel Plate Boys' room set-up, Saturday's Art Fair on the Square will feature about 40 different artists displaying their work for show and sale. Festival-goers will find all kinds of jewelry, paintings, photographs, textiles, woodworking, ceramics, and glass.

A preview party will be Friday night at Nickel Plate Arts, 107 S. 8th St., Noblesville. Admission to both events is free.

Reynolds believes art is a vital part of a community and is glad Noblesville does an annual art fair.

"I think it's great for a community to celebrate the artists within the community because I think art is the soul of the community," Reynolds said. "It's very important that the community has roots in the arts."

If You Go Box:

What: Art Fair on the Square

Where: Courthouse Square, downtown Noblesville

When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, rain or shine.

Cost: Free.

Preview party: Meet artists and purchase items, 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Nickel Plate Arts, 107 S. Eighth St., Noblesville. Free.


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