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March 2011

Maria V. Howard Arts Center in Rocky Mount, NC, Offers New Exhibitions

The Maria V. Howard Arts Center located at the Imperial Centre for the Arts and Sciences in Rocky Mount, NC, is presenting several new exhibitions including: David Edgar: Plastiquarium, on view through May 8, 2011; Dion Burroughs: Colorful Heritage, on view through May 8, 2011; New Aesthetic: Nash-Edgecombe High Schools Juried Art Competition, on view through May 15, 2011; 20 Potters 20 Teachers: John C. Campbell Craft School, on view through May 22; The Rule of Five: Carl Billingsley, Christian Benefiel, Matt Sigmon, Etienne Jackson, and Stuart Kent, on view through May 22; and Handcrafted: A Juried Exhibition, on view through May 22, 2011.

The Plastiquarium is immersed in mystery. As recyclable HDPE plastic containers spread concentrates of consumer product pollutants, the Plastiquarium creatures evolved in the image of their packaging forbearers. David Edgar culminates his sculpture MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art, experience as a Production Artist on the EPCOT Center and Tokyo Disneyland projects, heritage as a third generation Floridian, and human experiences with recyclable materials to create an enveloping underwater environment of unique plastic creatures.

Folk art is often celebrated for the directness between the artist and the subject of their work. Folk artists connect to their inspirations and media without the influence of formal art training or history, but instead through their personal experimentation and experiences. Dion Burroughs of Williamston, NC, has drawn and painted since he was a child, but has no formal art education. His current paintings use bold shapes and colors to represent interpersonal relationships and a connection to his African American heritage.

The exhibit, New Aesthetic: Nash-Edgecombe High Schools Juried Art Competition, showcases art from students enrolled in 9th-12th grades in public, private, and home schools in Nash and Edgecombe counties.

The John C. Campbell Folk School boasts honors including the American Craft Council’s Award of Distinction, the Governor’s Business Award in the Arts and Humanities, NC Folklore Society’s Community Traditions Award, listing on the National Register of Historic Places and many many others. The creative and supportive environment has attracted artists from all over the globe. This exhibit brings together 20 respected potters who have shared their knowledge with other Campbell students.

The Rule of Five: Carl Billingsley, Christian Benefiel, Matt Sigmon, Etienne Jackson, Stuart Kent presents five artists; five objects; five different materials; five different approaches to the concept of the vessel.

The vessel can be conceptualized in many ways: as an actual vessel with utility and specific purpose, as a metaphor for containment, as an object strictly for contemplation or even as a mental construct without predetermined form. The vessel can contain many meanings; it can represent the fullness of life, emptiness, a means of transport or even a final resting place. Five artists working in different media on monumental scale explore the concept of the vessel.

Handcrafted: A Juried Exhibition of ceramics, fiber, glass, metal, and wood is a national juried craft exhibition attracting a variety of traditional, mixed, and new craft media from across the United States. A different unbiased juror is contracted each year to make selections.

For further information check our NC Institutional Gallery listings, call the Center at 252/972-1163 or visit (

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