Feature Articles
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November Issue 2003

Here's a Carolina Arts Update! 7/22/05

erl originals gallery in Winston-Salem, NC, is now closed. The following is no reflection on the artist(s) mentioned in this article. They still deserve the historical fact that this exhibition happened.

Here is an excerpt from an article in the Winston-Salem Journal's Dec. 10, 2004, edition: "In late September, (2004) erl's owners, Peter and Lee Swenson, and the company they operate, Bogart Management Group, were foreclosed on by their bank. They were barred from their gallery at 480 West End Blvd. for being months in arrears on rent and utilities. Peter Swenson is facing numerous tax-fraud charges, as well as a growing number of civil lawsuits filed by creditors seeking to collect payments they say are long overdue".


ERL Originals in Winston-Salem, NC, Features Works by Folk Artists "Miss Addie" James and Albert Hodge

Works by American folk artists "Miss Addie" James, a painter, and Albert Hodge, a potter - both self-taught North Carolinian artists - will be featured at ERL Originals in Winston-Salem, NC, from Nov. 14 through Jan. 6, 2004.

"Miss Addie" will tell you she has been painting for as long as she can remember. The mother of five children and grandmother to six, she has produced an amazing volume of art, all reflecting her natural joy in everyday living. Her style is primitive, yet sophisticated in its own right. Whether she is depicting a group of children at play, a gathering of high fashion friends out on the town, or painting African masks on flip sides of a homemade fan, each work smiles for attention, then surprises the beholder by captivating the imagination and lingering long after the image is gone.

"Not a day goes by that I don't paint something," James explains. "I make pictures of mammas and daddies, children and flowers, fashion ladies dressed up fine, and angels. Whenever I see people with sad faces because their lives don't seem so pretty to them, I know what to do. I pull some black paper out of my bag and make little angel pictures. The colors I use just light right up on black paper! When I finish, I pray God will use them to help someone find peace and beauty. Then I pass them out. Not one person has ever said no, that they didn't want one."

James' art has been featured in community shows across North Carolina, and her works are on display in The Wallace House at Mitchell Community College, the Iredell Museum of Arts and Heritage, and the Statesville Depot.

Albert Hodge, a Catawba County native, is self-taught in turning, glazing and firing pottery. He applies careful details such as hair, mustaches, eyebrows and shaped teeth to the faces and devils on jugs, and he also creates swirl ware, using a variety of glazes he formulates himself. His creations include roosters, Santa Claus, Noah's Ark, Jonah and the Whale, Uncle Sam, and Adam & Eve, to name a few, each with its own personality.

Hodge began collecting old pottery almost 30 years ago when he lived in Newton, NC, his hometown. In 1989, he decided to make pottery. He built a shop in his backyard and bought a wheel and an electric kiln. Today, he uses a gas-fired as well as a wood-fired kiln. Decoration is his strong point. He layers clay, models and shapes it, and uses some commercial under glazes for colorful touches to create folksy sculptures.

For more information check our NC Commercial Gallery listings, call the gallery at 336/722-9030 or on the web at (www.erloriginals.com).

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