Rad A. Drew Photography: The Legend Classic Irvington Cafe

Continental Divide at Dawn

Continental Divide at Dawn
Continental Divide at Dawn

Saturday, August 26, 2017

The Legend Classic Irvington Cafe

Home of True Patrons of the Local Arts!

The Legend Classic Irvington Café
5614 E Washington St
Indianapolis, IN 46219
(317) 536-2028

My exhibit, Our Indiana, is currently showing at Legends. On Wednesday, September 6, from 6:30 to 8:30, you're invited to a reception to see my images and mingle with friends and neighbors. Since this is my third exhibit at Legends, I thought it was a good opportunity to share a little about the Robertson's who own Legends and make these exhibits possible for many local artists. -- Rad

John and Kim Robertson, Proprietors of The Legend Classic Irvington Cafe

Did you know that when you patronize The Legend Classic Irvington Cafe on Indy's east side, you are supporting local artists? 

Legends (as it's known to those of us in the neighborhood) has been a favorite Irvington restaurant were one can get a great meal, a fine wine, a local craft beer, and see the work of local artists on exhibit year-round.

Owners, John and Kim Robertson, recognizing and valuing the significance of a community's art, began showing the work of local artists shortly after opening Legends in 2003 and they continue the practice to this day.

Kim is the driving force behind the exhibits and shows deep appreciation for the work. “The art created in a community is a vital part of its soul,” she said. “I once heard art defined as work that makes you feel more alive in its presence. With that thought in mind, I would assert that featuring local art makes for a more vibrant community.”

When Kim began showing local art in 2003, it was in part to fill the restaurant walls with art that would create an engaging and stimulating environment for restaurant customers, but it was also to fill a community need. As a member of the Irvington Guild of Artists, Kim was aware that the Guild was looking for their own gallery space, but at that time they didn’t have the resources or the manpower to operate one. Having just opened Legends, Kim and John offered their dining room as an exhibit area. For the first year, then Guild president, Becky Hill, was instrumental in coordinating exhibitions. O
ver time, Kim took on the curation responsibilities.

Rita Spalding (Click for Website)
Since then Legends has exhibited the work of many area artists, including Kyle Ragsdale, Quincy Owens, Emma Overman, Rita Spalding, Jenny Elkins, Martha Santo, Adele Schluge, Kathleen Biale, Freddi Jacobi Stevens, Chris Griffin Woods, Wayne Kimmel, Patti Owings, Ginny Taylor Rosner, and myself, to name a few.

Quincy Owens (Website)
“In choosing art,” Kim says, “I look for a distinctive point of view and an artist who has a large enough body of work that the exhibit conveys a cohesive narrative.” Kim’s favorite artists always have what she refers to as “a fearless originality” to their work.

Emma Overman (Website)
In the bar side of the restaurant you can see the work of local artist, Ginny Taylor Rosner, permanently on display. Rosner's timeless works featuring Irvington scenes fit perfectly the Legends' neighborhood mood and feel. 

“I chose Ginny's work when we expanded our restaurant,” said Kim, “because she was working with the process called gum bichromate which I thought had such an evocative quality. It made all the images of Irvington look like they had been unearthed from an attic. Each picture had a moody, haunted aura. At the time of our expansion, I really wanted to reference the literary source of our restaurant's name (The Legend of Sleepy Hollow) and her work helped tell the story.”

Art is exhibited in the Legends' main dining room, where works of local artists rotate in and out every two months. A flexible hanging system allows local painters, photographers, and mixed media artists to quickly and easily install their exhibits. 

Jenny Elkins (website)

In the spirit of truly supporting local artists, Kim and John allow artists to sell their work commission-free. For many artists being able to keep the full proceeds from the sale of their work helps them continue to create new art, and to offer work at reasonable prices.

Currently I’m showing my exhibit, Our Indiana, featuring photographs of barns, local structures, and rural scenes I’ve discovered on my continuing exploration of our beautiful state. The images are evocative and moody and many were made with the iPhone. This marks my third exhibit at Legends. 

Rad A. Drew, photo by Sally Wolf (Sally's Website)


There is an opening event on Wednesday, September 6, 6:30 to 8:30. Come to Legends for a drink. Stay for dinner. See the work and enjoy great fellowship. Here's a link to details. 


Here are a few of my images currently showing in the Our Indiana exhibit.

Winter Barn

Gothic Chapel, Crown Hill Cemetery

Behind the Barn

Once a Barnyard

Quintessence (aka Mosey)
The next exhibit in October and November features the distinctive work of painter, Kyle Ragsdale.

Kyle Ragesdale (Website)
Any artist interested in showing their work can stop by the restaurant or call Kim. “I am always on the lookout for new artists to feature,” she said.

Oh, and by the way, in case you're wondering, the food at Legends is top notch and the prices reasonable. They are open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday, and Sunday brunch. They take pride in their wine selection and serve a variety of local craft beers. If you want to get a feel for the hospitality of the Irvington neighborhood, include a stop at Legends, and while you're there, check out the local art on exhibit!

The Legend Classic Irvington Café
5614 E Washington St
Indianapolis, IN 46219
(317) 536-2028