Womens Lifestyle Mid Michigan — September 2010
Change Language:
Lakeview Woman Reconnects With Her Artistic Dream
Lori Hansen

Growing up, Molly Moblo-Perusse loved singing and dancing, and planned to study performing arts in college.

But sometimes life has a funny way of changing our direction.

“I loved the arts, but it just didn’t pan out in college,” said Moblo- Perusse, who lives in Lakeview. “Then I switched to cosmetology, moved to Florida, met my husband, and did some interior decorating. I liked that so much, I did it for the next eight years.”

After a few more moves and having two children, Moblo-Perusse has now returned to her love of the arts - only this time it involves expressing herself through works of art. She hasn’t ever taken an art class, but about nine years ago she began teaching herself mosaics.

“I saved dishes for an awful lot of years,” jokes Moblo-Perusse, who uses broken dish pieces in her mosaics.

She loves art so much, that she turned it into a kind of career. She opened a full-service shop in Lakeview called A Work of Art at 326 S. Lincoln St., the same building that housed her father’s drug store from 1960 to 1992. In the back of the shop, art classes are taught.

“We teach mosaics, paper mosaics, oils, stained glass and more. I’d like to try basket weaving. I’d like to bring in other artists for more classes.”

In 2009, Moblo-Perusse took a chance and entered a piece in ArtPrize, a Grand Rapids-based art competition that draws artists from all over the world. Winning works are voted on by people attending the show and $449,000 is given away to the winners.

“It was exhilarating, it was fun,” Moblo-Purusse said, explaining that her two-dimensional piece was selected to be in Paul Collins’ downtown Grand Rapids gallery, which recently closed.

“That was very flattering,” said Moblo-Perusse.

She’s entering the ArtPrize competition again this year with her 9-foot mosaic angel she calls “Luminary”. It is a sculpture created by using wire fencing and plaster mold to form the base and body, copper feathers that have a patina finish for the wings, and colored stained glass on the gemstone headband and mosaic shawl.

This is how Moblo-Perusse explains her work: “My intention for this piece is sharing a reminder that we are the light bringers and sharing our light brings inner healing. A luminary is one that is an inspiration to others, a leading light. An angel can illuminate the thought and mind of man by strengthening the power of vision.”

During the ArtPrize competition, which runs from Sept. 22 through Oct. 10, her piece will be displayed at the Grand Rapids Civic Theater.

“I look back in my life and now see how everything has led me to where I am today,” she said, “And it’s great!”