A Life Well Lived

Friends, family
celebrate Saueressig’s life

The Madison artist died Sept. 28
after a bout with cancer

(November 2014) – Robert Saueressig was a man whom most people would describe as jovial. His smiling face was a familiar sight on the streets of Madison, Ind. A creator of bold paintings and murals, the evidence of his creative mind can be seen on walls in homes, businesses and even alleyways throughout the town. His work brought happiness and joy to anyone who saw it. He focused on the beauty of the world and wanted to show it to others.

Photo courtesy of Teresa Waller

Bob and Heidi Saueressig pose
in this recent photo following an
art show awards presentation at
Madison’s Art on Main gallery.

Saueressig died Sept. 28 after a bout with cancer. It was his wish to be remembered, not with a sad funeral, but with a gathering of friends and family. This final wish was granted on Oct. 11. The West Street Art Center filled, and the walls rang with laughter at fond memories and humorous stories.
Saueressig’s dear friend, Connie Partington, referred to him as the Johnny Appleseed of paintings, graphic design and murals. She spoke of him “linking artists and galleries together like a weaver creating another image in a large tapestry.”
The tapestry of Saueressig’s life was lovingly displayed at the Celebration of Life. The affair was called a B.Y.O.S. event: Bring Your Own Saueressig. The walls were hung with paintings loaned from his many collectors. Memorabilia from his advertising days, prints, studio equipment, his apron, family photos, even his dog tags from his days with the U.S. Navy were exhibited. All of the above combined to make a powerful statement about the way the artist lived his life – to the fullest.

Photo courtesy of Teresa Waller

Robert Saueressig’s paintings can be found on many outdoor buildings, including this one in downtown Madison, Ind. It is located in an alley beside Gallery 115.

As an artist, Saueressig had much influential in the community. He was able to teach and impact a great many since his arrival to Madison in 2001 with his wife, Heidi. First and foremost, he recognized the importance of artists supporting one another. He served as an officer of the Madison Art Club. He was also a member of the Cincinnati Art Club, Indiana Plein Air Painters, Hoosier Salon, Indiana Artists Club, and Tiger Lily Press of Cincinnati. When owner of the West Street Art Center, Peter Ellis, realized that Saueressig was driving to Cincinnati in order to attend a life drawing group, Ellis offered his building as a meeting place for a local group. Saueressig handled the rest.
Bringing artists together was one of his many talents. The Tuesday Night Drawing Group was developed and continues to be a great success and enjoyed by many. Fellow artist Teresa Waller has enjoyed attending the weekly drawing group for years. “He effortlessly connected me with like minded people, and it changed my life,” she says.
Waller had lived in the area for close to two decades without connecting to the art community. She is now an integral member of the Madison Art Club and works to bring other artists into the fold. She gives Saueressig the credit for this.
Russ Vossler was able to describe Saueressig’s style of living very well when he said, “Bob’s code seemed to echo Admiral Nelson’s philosophy: ‘Never mind maneuvers, always go straight at them!’ This was the way Saueressig conducted his personal relationships, and his art.” Over and over again, people will describe him in this manner.

Photo courtesy of Teresa Waller

Robert Saueressig and his wife,
Heidi, pose at the Art on Main
gallery in Madison with (from left) son Kip and nephew Pat.

A direct personality that left no question as to what was on his mind. “He was a close friend whose special place in my life and in my heart cannot be filled,” Waller says.
His daughter, Tanya Saueressig Nevin, lovingly wrote of her father in his obituary, “The ripple effect of the love he showed to each person he met will go on indefinitely.”
The way in which he requested friends and family say goodbye to him was a direct communication as well. “Be happy. Have adventures. Love one another,” he seemed to say on the evening of the Celebration of Life.
Saueressig’s paintings are many and provide small windows into a “life well lived.” An exhibit of his paintings are currently displayed, along with paintings by his daughter, at Village Lights Bookstore, 110 E. Main St. in Madison. All sales of Saueressig’s paintings are currently on hold until a complete catalog of his work can be created.
Those wishing to remember Saueressig and show support for his family can order T-shirts screen printed by hand by Saueressig’s nephews. The T-shirts are adorned with Saueressig’s distinctive signature. Those wishing to order should e-mail rhs.strong@gmail.com.


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