The Heart of America Artists’ Association was created by Todd Williams and John P. Lasater IV, two artists who have a vision to grow the appreciation of representational fine art, and promote the beauty of the Midwest to the fine arts community nationwide.
In 2008, inspired by travels, the idea for a top notch artists’ association in the “heart of America” was born. Partnering with local organizations, two plein air events were held in 2009 and 2010 in the city of Bentonville, Arkansas. After some patient seeking, in 2013 a new partnership was gained with the Illinois River Watershed Partnership, who wished to see the region promoted through art. Out of this desire was born the Illinois River Salon.