I have new bottle openers for sale this First Friday at VAE in downtown Raleigh. These are each one-of-a-kind, with various markings and/or enamelings on steel. If you can’t make it down they are also for sale online at my Etsy site. These make great Father’s Day gifts!
Frank Lloyd Wright called the Florida Southern campus “Child of the Sun”, and designed what he said was one of the first true American campuses, more specifically, one for the orange grove country of Florida. Located in Lakeland, the campus has the highest concentration of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings in one location in the world.
Of the eighteen structures he designed, twelve were built and still stand on the campus, and are all part of a larger masterplan that Wright created. All of the structures are linked with sun-blocking esplanades that shade the sun as students walk between buildings.
The other characteristic that binds the masterplan is the custom patterned concrete blocks that Wright first introduced in his California “textile-block” Usonian houses. Every building uses the horizontal shaped blocks, all made on site using Florida sand.
The College has begun fundraising efforts to start renovations on all the Frank Lloyd Wright structures, as many of them are in disrepair and have been unsympathetically renovated and repurposed over the years. One of the first efforts was to construct a Unsonian house that Wright designed, many of which were originally intended to circle the perimeter of the campus. The craftsmanship on this Usonian, following the original plans, showcases the detailing and the feel of the house as it would have been as a new home back in the 1920’s. The house was just completed in late 2013.
The Pearl Fryar Topiary Gardens are located in Bishopville, SC, and include the yard around Pearl’s house along with the adjacent lot. Before he bought the land it was a cornfield, and he started all the planting that is now maturing on the lots back in the mid-eighties.
I became familiar with the work of Pearl Fryar when he gave a tree-shaping demonstration during an NCSU Gregg Art Gallery event last year. He’s a self-taught topiary artist, learning on his own and following his own rules. At the demonstration he spoke at length about the need for folks to follow their own path, learn on their own, and about the merits of vocational schools and working with our hands.
I’ve never seen plants and trees sculpted quite like Pearl does it, and am intrigued at how he gets the ideas for his work.
Flanders Gallery in Raleigh, NC features work by Greg Linquist and Mary Mattingly through April 28th, 2014. Lindquist painted a large site-specific mural and has a group of related paintings. Mattingly displays sculptures assembled from geodesic dome parts, large photographic prints, and hand-pressed prints of the geodesic assemblies. Both artists explore themes critical of the detrimental effects of “progress” in contemporary culture: environmental disaster, wasteful consumerism, and the exploitation of natural resources.
These are all 5″ x 5″ on 6″ x 8″ watercolor paper.
Here are a few examples of new work I’m going to have for sale this Friday at the Visual Art Exchange in Raleigh. The images are 5″ x 5″ acrylic paint and ink on 6″ x 8″ 140 lb. watercolor paper.
The paintings are improvisational documents, small windows capturing a few moments in time.
I was one of 6 designers selected to be included in the VAE’s “Launch” program for 2014. It’s a retail incubator that gives artists and designers the opportunity to test out retail items in the front window and gallery of the VAE space on Martin Street in Raleigh. The year has just begun, so I’m not sure what I will have to sell throughout the year, but for now I have bottle openers and some of my art books. Check out these and works by other “Launch” artists. Our work will be there all year long.