Windy City scenes take Baltimore by storm

November 08, 2003|By Sarah Schaffer

Stormy weather was relentless Thursday evening, but it didn't dampen the mood at Greg Otto's art opening. The reception, held at the American Institute of Architects, was packed with folks trying to get a peek at the local artist's depiction of Chicago.

For Otto, 60, a Roland Park painter who normally creates architectural scenes of Baltimore, the success was a shock and a thrill. "Even though the weather was not good, the people just made a tremendous effort to get there. And it was one of those occasions where people were really responding to and talking about [the work]. It was a wonderfully warm evening for me," he said.

More than 250 people turned out for the show, and five of the 37 displayed works were purchased during the party. Otto, who had already sold four other pieces prior to the opening, was pleased that his series, which took him more than three years to complete, was well-received. His pleasure turned to elation Friday morning, when a local art collector called with an offer to purchase the remaining 28 of his Windy City scenes.

Otto called the sell-out "breathtaking."

"I don't think I've completely understood it at this point. It's hard to absorb," he said. "To have this happen made it just totally fulfilling. I couldn't have asked for a better experience."

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