Press Release - February 15, 2018

The Art of David Steelman
Featured at the Vineland Public Library

The Art of David Steelman will be featured at the Vineland Public Library, 1058 E. Landis Ave., in the Doris Tripp Room, during the month of March. David’s collection of art includes paintings, sketches, wood carvings, poems and cartoons.

David Anthony Steelman, 1962-2015, had a life replete with art. Before kindergarten, he learned to draw cartoons that he watched on television. Go Speed Racer was a favorite for his early sketches. When in high school, there wasn’t anything his art teacher could teach him. David was left free to draw whatever he liked and earned his “A”.
Enlisting in the Air Force after graduating high school, David continued to do art, mainly masks. His talents were recognized and in 1982, he was featured on the front page of The Airlifter, the Air Force magazine in Dover, Delaware. After completing his service, David worked for ILC in Dover, where he helped create items used in space such as space suits. He also made models of gloves worn by the astronauts.

David resided in Delaware with his wife and two children, Kyle and Amanda. He lived briefly in Florida before returning to Vineland where he was born. David continued to pursue his art, making items in clay and plastic. He also developed a special craft in wood carving. His largest wood project was a 10 foot totem pole which featured painted figures of a chipmunk, which sat on top of a turtle which was on top of an owl. This totem pole stood on his parents’ front yard for 10 years.

David was inspired by a good friend, Annette Franceschi, who was been in a wheel chair her whole life. Smart and independent, her perseverance and upbeat attitude of “I can do” impressed David so much that he created the cartoons, Annette’s Way. The cartoon depicts the exaggerated and imagined escapades of this special friend, and it shows Annette meeting the hardships of those whose lives are dependent on the use of a wheelchair.

David passed away in 2015. This exhibit is compiled by his mother, Nancy G. Steelman. A reception will be held on Saturday, March 24, 2018 from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

All areas of the library are accessible to people with disabilities. To learn more about library displays, services and programs, (856) 794-4244. Regular library hours are Monday – Thursday (9-8); Friday and Saturday (9-5); closed Sunday.