The Uncommon Gourd
Mixed media gourd art and miniature paintings
October hours: daily 10–5
Year round by appointment
Rosey Bolte’s dad introduced her to the idea of painting on gourds over 30 years ago.
“He brought a gourd from the family farm in Tipton County to my house in Brown County, suggesting I give it a try,” Rosey says. “I quickly discovered the many beautiful things one can create with a gourd.”
Rosey is a self-taught artist who is inspired by the natural shapes of the gourds, but is also influenced by her trips to Mexico and the American Southwest.
“I am in the authentic tradition of folk artists who developed their own style, which originates outside of formal instruction,” Rosey explains.
Raised on a farm in northern Indiana, she has lived in Brown County for most of her adult life, and her art emerges from her surroundings.
“I have always loved the hills, the colorful trees & the wildlife,” Rosey says.
Twigs from fallen sassafras limbs are used for perches for many of her bird creations.
“My hiking in the woods is a business trip!” Rosey adds.
Rosey grows her own gourds. After harvesting the gourds, letting them dry, and then scrubbing off the outer skin, Rosey sculpts with Paperclay onto the gourds to create beaks, tails, ears, etc. for the shapes of her roosters and hens, songbirds, owls, foxes, cats, warty toads and bears.
Over the 30 years she has made gourd art, she has never stopped inventing. Lately she’s been expanding the varieties of birds and animals she makes, as well as working in new color palettes.
Rosey also paints Halloween and Day of the Dead gourds, decorated skulls inspired by trips to Mexico.
“I’ve been excited to create new pieces in the Day of the Dead motif,” Rosey says.
These new pieces, alongside all of Rosey’s other whimsical work, will be on display in her home studio, The Uncommon Gourd, during the entire month of October during the Back Roads of Brown County Studio Tour.
Visitors to her studio can also see Rosey demonstrate most steps in her process.
More information on Rosey and her artwork can be found at www.RoseysUncommonGourd.com.
Or find her studio on Facebook: