|For more information about this article or gallery, please call the gallery phone number listed in the last line of the article, "For more info..."|
December Issue 2004
Street Gallery in Camden, SC, Offers Exhibit With Animal Theme
Buckingham Palace in London, the Blair House in Washington, DC, Merrill Lynch Corporation in New York City, and Brookgreen Gardens in South Carolina, all have a common denominatorworks of art selected for their collections from various artists who will be exhibiting at Rutledge Street Gallery in Camden, SC.
Beginning the week of the Colonial Cup animal enthusiasts will be able to enjoy the show, Art of the Animal, on view through Dec. 20, 2004.
Sculptures and paintings by artists Richard Thompson, Cynthia Rigden, Maria Kirby-Smith, Walter Matia, Garland Weeks, Jason Scull, Dennis Anderson, Burton Gale, Martin Gates and John Potoschnik will be on exhibit.
Texas artist Richard Thompson has brought together artists from around the country to exhibit at Rutledge Street Gallery. According to Monica Laschanzky of Rutledge Street Gallery, "We wish to thank Richard for working with us and putting together this incredible show. The artists are all extraordinary and it is obvious that they have lived with, loved, studied and worked with animals of all kinds."
Thompson has combined his love for the outdoors with the love of painting and sculpting. Collectors from coast to coast have sought out his sculpture and paintings giving them a connection with the animal world. His sculpture blends accuracy with sensitivity, and frequently with humor. "My aim is to get past the surface to the heart of the subject and hopefully touch the heart of the viewer."
Thompson has exhibited nationally in juried shows such as the North American Sculpture Exhibition in Golden, CO, and the National Sculpture Society Show in New York. His most recent commission was the life-size Prairie Woman for a Texas college.
Cynthia Rigden's roots are in Arizona and the West, but she doesn't call herself a "western artist", rather an artist who comes from the West. "My work isn't western in the sense that it's cowboys and Indians shoot-'em ups. It's western in the fact that I live here and my animals, my models are mostly here." She says, "I like to catch the subtle attitude of the horse, but I don't try to romanticize them. I believe the gracefulness and the form of the horse speak for themselves."
Internationally known sculptor Maria Kirby-Smith, lives and works in Camden, SC, creating a variety of media, both large and small, from clay to bronze. She has studied in art programs around the world. Her works of art are in collections that include medallions for The Franklin Mint, coins for The Audubon Society, O. Henry (life size), Lovey (dog, life size) and book for the O. Henry Festival Park in Greensboro, NC, and the Police Memorial (an eight foot policeman holding a small child with a teddy bear) for the city of Richmond, VA.
Maryland-based wildlife sculptor Walter Matia spent his boyhood days "bird-watching, botanizing, log flipping and collecting." As an avid duck hunter, he experienced "a lifetime of icy mornings, blistered feet, mosquitoes, torrid afternoons, chapped hands, wonderful dinners and the companionship of great knowledgeable friends" all of which he translates into his art.
Matia's works are in many selected public and corporate collections including his larger than-life size commission of the fighting bull logo of the Merrill Lynch Corporation headquartered in New York City. The artist was also commissioned to create a fountain and wall frieze for Blair House, the US President's official guesthouse in Washington, DC.
Matia's sculpture Lonesome Glory, is installed at the National Steeplechase Museum in Camden, SC. Commissioned by the Jeffords family, the sculpture was originally located at the National Racing Museum and Hall of Fame in Saratoga, NY, but the family wished for the sculpture to be installed in Camden, due to the tremendous racing record here for Lonesome Glory.
Burton Gale was a native of Vermont and settled in Camden, SC, for the climate and equestrian activity. He was a retired United States Air Force Officer and retired teacher. He earned recognition as a sculptor of animal bronzes. Gale also produced welded metal constructions, assemblages comprised of found objects and ceramic pieces. He has exhibited in Vermont, New York, Texas, South Carolina, Massachusetts and Louisiana.
Martin Gates made his first carving, an Indian head from a piece of juniper at his grandparents' cabin in Oregon. Working first with his father in the antique importing business, he decided, after winning his first major competition, to pursue art as a full time career. Since then, Gates has won numerous awards and exhibited in major shows and museums across the country, including National Wildlife Federation in Washington, DC, Ward Museum, Salisbury, MD, and Benson Park Sculpture Garden in Loveland CO. His works range from a life-size Madonna to tiny hummingbirds. Gates' creations evolve from alabaster and marble to bronze and fired terracotta. He lives with his wife and two daughters in Florida.
Garland Weeks, realized two of his primary professional sculpting goals by being elected to full membership in the National Sculpture Society and to the National Academy of Western art in 1990. He was selected as the Official Sculptor of Texas in 1995 by the Texas State Legislature and advanced to the status of "Fellow" by the National Sculpture Society in 2004. Some of Weeks life-size monuments include OldYeller to memorialize the classic book's author, Fred Gipson and the life-size monument at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center in Kansas memorializing the astronaut Gene Cernan as being the last man to step off the face of the moon.
Weeks works on sculptures based on observations of wildlife, insects, pets and livestock. He is currently engaged in a commission for a life-sized WWII infantry soldier, as well as a memorial to public safety "first responders with 6 figures at 1 times life-size. He also finds time to serve as the Kenan Master Sculptor in Residence at Brookgreen Garden, SC, and to teach 24 high-school student art scholarship recipients at a 21-day art camp each summer.
Weeks' works are in collections around the world including Buckingham Palace in London, England, World Boxing Federation in Mexico City, Mexico and Bond International Gold, Inc. in Australia.
John Potoschnik was born in St. Ives, Cornwall, England, raised in Wichita, KS, and currently resides in Wylie, TX. After graduation from Wichita State with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree he pursued study in illustration at Art Center College in Los Angeles and most recently in human anatomy at the Lyme Academy of Fine Art in Old Lyme, CT. After working as a freelance illustrator in Dallas for ten years, Potoschnik moved into the fine arts in 1982 and has since then, completed more than 500 paintings. His work has appeared in Southwest Art, American Artist and The Artist's Magazine. His paintings are found in collections from Rhode Island to Hawaii.
Jason Scull began sculpting in 1987. His work has found a receptive audience in the western states and can be found in private, museum and corporate collections throughout the United States, Canada and the British Isles. His public sculptures include a life size equestrian monument to John "Jack" C. Hays, early Texas Ranger, located on the courthouse square in San Marcos, Texas.
For more information check our SC Commercial Gallery listings or call the gallery at 803/425-0071.
Carolina Arts is published monthly by Shoestring Publishing Company, a subsidiary of PSMG, Inc. Copyright© 2004 by PSMG, Inc., which published Charleston Arts from July 1987 - Dec. 1994 and South Carolina Arts from Jan. 1995 - Dec. 1996. It also publishes Carolina Arts Online, Copyright© 2004 by PSMG, Inc. All rights reserved by PSMG, Inc. or by the authors of articles. Reproduction or use without written permission is strictly prohibited. Carolina Arts is available throughout North & South Carolina.