Newly restored paintings by Oak Park artist Reginald Mars (1901-1973) featuring sports activities will be on display in the Oak Park Public Library Art Gallery in August. Originally installed in Ridgeland Common in 1968, these paintings depict sporting events within the community and were commissioned around 1962 when local architect Jack Barclay designed the building at Ridgeland Common. As time passed and the facilities were remodeled, the paintings were eventually put in storage.
In March 2011, the Park District of Oak Parks Art Advisory Committee hosted a kick-off fundraising event at Pleasant Home which featured architect Jack Barclay and Oak Park art conservator Timothy Lennon. The Park District of Oak Park later commissioned Lennon, who retired from the Art Institute of Chicago, to restore the paintings.
A reception hosted by the Park District of Oak Park and the Oak Park Public Library will be Sunday, Aug. 3, from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Gallery. The reception is free and open to the public. The Art Gallery is open seven days a week during regular hours at the Main Library, 834 Lake Street.