By Dee McKinsey—
MUNCIE, IN—Cornerstone Artist Matt Blanchfield is lovingly working to restore the nearly 100-year-old stencils in the walls of the Heritage Room at the Cornerstone Center for the Arts, 520 E. Main St., before Cornerstone’s Centennial Celebration in 2026.
This is not the easiest task.
The stencils are on plaster, some of which needs to be repaired before the stencils, which were hand cut 100 years ago, can be painted on. The paint colors also must match the original stencils.
“It is not what you cannot do to bring back the past to look like the present, but what you will do,” Blanchfield says.
Blanchfield and his wife Susan are the featured April artists in Cornerstone’s Judith Barnes Gallery.
His exhibition of paintings, many fanciful and symbolic, officially opened April 6th. His works will be displayed in the gallery throughout the month.
Blanchfield is a former designer of fine china, tile ware and glassware. He was also a political and editorial cartoonist for the Troy Record and the Saratogian newspapers in New York. A calligrapher for the Better Business Bureaus of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, he is also a children’s book illustrator a (Jackson’s Story by Elizabeth Baker).
Blanchfield joined Cornerstone as a teacher in 2020 as a visual art, painting, caricature and illustration instructor.
Susan Blanchfield, also teaches art at Cornerstone.
In her past she was a U.S. Navy Petty Officer, aide to the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations in Washington, DC, at the Navy Annex and Pentagon. She also has been the director of memory care in Bradenton, FL, and Anderson, IN, Memory Care.
She was a risk analyst and loss prevention safety director and trainer for Simon Property Group, Inc., where she inspected 230 malls and 80 shopping centers. Susan has been a professional model and a singer, which includes 30 years of soloist singing; 20 years of youth choir directing; senior therapy using singing to promote improved memory care.
Cornerstone Center for the Arts offers opportunities for creative expression for all through community and rental spaces in a historic setting. Thousands of area residents attend events, wedding and civic events, in addition to taking classes in art, dance and music. Cornerstone is home to the The Masterworks Chorale and Orchestra Indiana. For additional information go to www.cornerstonearts.org or call 765-281-9503.