Bella Vista Arts Council recognizes area artists

The Bella Vista Arts Council is pleased to honor three artists for the spring 2023 Artist of the Month program: metal worker Dave Darpinian, writer Donna Hanson, and emerging young musician Aidan Taylor. 

The group will be honored at a public reception from at 5 p.m. Thursday, March 16 at Bella Vista Bar and Grill, 98 Clubhouse Dr. in Bella Vista.

The Bella Vista Arts Council Artist of the Month program began in 2018 and has recognized 41 local artists to date. Starting in 2023, receptions honoring chosen artists will be held quarterly, and three types of artists will be spotlighted at each event.


Metalwork artist Dave Darpinian specializes in Repoussé. All his work is handmade so that each piece is unique, all made without forms or molds.

“It is very labor intensive just using a hammer and chisel,” he said.

His artwork is of living things such as plants bugs, birds, animals, fish, octopi and mermaids. His jewelry pieces include beautiful pendants and cuffs, some of which he will have on display at the reception. Photos of his work can be viewed on Instagram davedarpinian and on Facebook.


Donna Hanson, a writer, author and multimedia artist, will be recognized for her writing and watercolor work. Examples of some of her sketches and watercolors will be on display at this reception.

Hanson has also gained fame through her writing with her book titled Heroes All, inspired by the LST 374 ship and the crew of sailors who bonded from their experiences aboard this vessel. This book is available in bookstores and online and author copies will be available for signing at the reception.

Hanson is a strong supporter of the arts in Bella Vista through her service on the board of directors as president of The Village Lake Poets and Writers, where all genres of the arts are being connected through her blogs and newsletters.


Arts Council members will be introducing at this reception one of Bella Vista’s emerging young artists, Aidan Taylor. Born and raised in Bella Vista, musician Taylor is an accomplished trumpet player in the Bentonville Bands program, which includes Concert Band, Marching Band and Jazz Band. He has been selected for All-Region band in junior high, and both All-Region and All-State bands as a high schooler. He has also competed at regional jazz competitions and festivals as part of the award-winning BHS Jazz Orchestra.

While Taylor is a jazz man at heart, his passion for music encompasses many genres. To that end, he is also a member of the inaugural youth ensemble of the Arkansas Musicworks British Brass Band, which had its first performance last summer.

The Bella Vista Arts Council, an advisory board to the City Council, was created by the City Council in February 2016 to help promote the arts in Bella Vista. Board members are Demara Titzer (president), J.B. Portillo, and BJ Tassin. The board established an Artist of the Month program, in which selected artists and their work will be showcased and recognized for their achievements.

A committee will choose each month from qualified artists, who must be residents of Bella Vista. Events will be held in a location around the city. Submit nominations via email to