Eddie Mormon painting.jpg

A painting of R&B and jazz singer and pianist Nellie Lutcher by artist Eddie Morman.

The Arts and Humanities Council of Southwest Louisiana has curated an exhibit to honor 15 local legends.

"Twofold: Lake Charles Legends" will be on display Feb. 7-April 10 in Historic City Hall. The council selected 15 local artists to participate in the exhibit. Each artist created an abstract piece of art for their selected legend to illustrate the legend's life and life's work. This not only showcases their talent, but also shines a spotlight onto the local artistry in and around Lake Charles as well as tells the history of the city.

"Based on the success of the World War II and John F. Kennedy exhibits, we've made it a priority to plan shows with mass public appeal," Matt Young, director of cultural arts, explained as to how the idea for this new exhibit came to be.

When asked how the 15 legends were selected, Young said the Arts Council gave careful consideration to ensure that a diverse body of legends were selected and that factors such as race, age and professional backgrounds, as well as the public's input, contributed to their decisions.

The artists used a combination of mediums to create their abstract pieces. The mediums range from paintings, drawings, prints, and even porcelain.

"It allows the artist to shape the legend's legacy," Young noted.

Some of the local legends the exhibit will be honoring include Judge Norma Holloway Johnson, Dr. Michael DeBakey, Queen Ida Guillory, Willie Mount and Charles Sallier.

What does Young want the public to take away from this exhibit?

"Without a doubt, you'll be proud to be a Lake Charles resident," he said. "So many great leaders have come from Southwest Louisiana, and this exhibit is proof of that."

A reception for the opening of the exhibit will be held 5:30-8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7. Refreshments will be served and admission is free.

Historic City Hall is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and admission is free. For more information, call 491-9147 or visit

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