Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Bob Diven Art Exhibit, A Pilgrim’s Portraits

June 17 @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm


I was born up Route 2 at Rockford Memorial Hospital in July 1959, and brought home to our expanding house on Jefferson Street to meet my four older brothers. This unique place had already stamped me as a Midwesterner by the time our family moved to New Mexico when I was 5.
Over the years there were family visits to my aunt and uncle and cousins and grandmother, and then later visits for funerals and burials.
I found opportunities to be here for a day or two in my adult life, but in the fall of 2023, I returned to Oregon for an entire month to, as I put it, “Spend time among the ghosts”. My living connection to Oregon was one cousin but having left as a child I had not formed the bonds with schoolmates and teachers that my older brothers had. So, for all I knew, I, too, would be moving through Oregon like a specter, an unseen observer, journaling and visiting the graveyards of the 6 generations of ancestors that lie buried here.
What I didn’t expect was to find the tendrils of connection growing toward me, beginning my first day in town. There was no such thing as a short conversation. That is Oregon, of course, but it was also the Oregon in me. And as those connections multiplied and wrapped themselves around me, I began to take portrait photographs of the people I was having interactions with, capturing them in the context of their lives along the Rock River. And the result is an exhibition of 18 portraits.


June 17
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Event Categories:




124 N. 4th St.
Oregon, Illinois 61061
+ Google Map