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April 2011

Arts Council of Wilson in Wilson, NC, Features Works by Barton College Art Professors, Delina Aberle, and High School Students

The Arts Council of Wilson in Wilson, NC, is presenting several exhibits at the Wilson Arts Center including: Barton Art: Barton College Professors From the Department of Art & Design, on view in the Boykin Gallery through Apr. 16, 2011; WAAA Featured Artist: Delina Aberle, on view in the Lowe Gallery through Apr. 16, 2011; Greenfield Art Exhibitions, on view in the Lowe and Cooke Student Galleries through Apr. 16, 2011; and the annual First District Congressional Art Competition, on view from Apr. 19 - 23, 2011.

Despite having diverse backgrounds and interests, J. Chris Wilson, Susan Fecho, Mark Gordon and Gérard Lange, the four faculty members of Barton College’s Department of Art and Design, each display a strong sense of the power of place in their artwork. Whether capturing vistas or the details therein, working within the landscape reflecting on nature’s complexity and beauty, or by observing life and the remains of human existence, these artists present a varied interpretation of the landscape.

J. Chris Wilson’s works in this exhibition provide a further glance into his broad sweeping series From Murphy to Manteo - An Artist’s Scenic Journey, which documents scenes along the US-64 corridor across the state of North Carolina. In actuality the landscapes Wilson paints include locales as much as 10 miles off the highway, but the concept in place is that this artery encompasses the total beauty of state from west to east. “For me, this journey is about rediscovering the riches of North Carolina in a pre-Interstate natural landscape,” Wilson says, “and now hoping that you might experience the journey with me through these paintings.”

For several years in a row, Barton Art and Design Department chair Susan Fecho has found direct inspiration from nature through her participation in artist residencies. These immersion programs have allowed the artist the opportunity to spend many successive days exploring and recording the environment. Fecho’s work concentrates on details of a place sometimes accompanied by photographs and detritus gleaned from a locale, collaged in place with drawn lines and painted hues completing the overall view of the scene. This mixing of media speaks to the artist’s work in both traditional printmaking and contemporary graphic design. Regarding her work Fecho says, “These details spawn stories for the viewer’s imagination that capture life in its most abandoned corners.”

Also dealing with details is Barton photography professor Gérard Lange. These images from his Italia series focus on nuances of Tuscan Italian cities. Rather than photographing the broad-sweeping vistas and overly recognized landscapes, Lange chose to concentrate on overlooked areas. The artist believes that when a viewer is accustomed to a preconceived idea of a place, that mental picture is sometimes all they see. Photographing the details offers a fresh perspective in an age oversaturated with images. Work in this series was completed in 1998, but has never been displayed before this year. “I like the idea that a photograph matures with time,” Lange said. “Often I engage in the making of negatives and not printing the images until years later. I’m currently holding a cache of 30 rolls of film shot before 2005 that I’m not even going to develop until 2015.”

Ceramics professor Mark Gordon is also an observer of his environment with work stemming from both physicality of a place and the objects that fill that place. “Inspiration comes to me by observing plant growth patterns, machinery, scrap yard treasures, animal skeletons, and through international travel,” says Gordon. His work manifests itself through ceramic vessels, vessels with sculptural components and sculpture installations. Interested in the metaphysical, Gordon’s mode of working combines the acts of thinking and working. This creates art responsive to impulse but also filled with the traditions of the medium. In many of his works one can observe a “living” sensibility as if the work were not crafted, but grown from the artist’s subconscious.

Delina Aberle has been selected by the Wilson Active Artist Association as their Featured Artist for an Arts Council show in the second floor Lowe Gallery. Aberle’s art features florals and landscapes painted on location - “en plein air” as well as studio still life painting. Travels for both business and pleasure have provided many opportunities to paint on site in scenic locations such as North Carolina’s own Outer Banks.

When in Wilson, Aberle can often be found painting at Lake Wilson, Wiggins Mill, and the Wilson Rose Garden. Through her paintings, she shares her motto “to see beauty in any location” and shares that beauty with her viewers and art collectors.

Aberle is a current member of the Wilson Active Artists Association and a previous member of the West Hartford Art League in West Hartford, CT. She has enjoyed a varied career instructing students in watercolor, screen printing and silversmithing. In addition to having her paintings shown at the Arts Council, Aberle’s unique jewelry designs can be found at The Gallery Shop.

The Arts Council is pleased to exhibit two Greenfield School annual art exhibits; The High School Exhibit and the Young Tar Heel Historians Exhibit.

The seventh grade participates in a judged statewide show entitled the Young Tar Heel Historians Exhibit. The students study North Carolina, its history and the significant buildings or sites from which they either make models, sculptures or paintings. Joanne Medlin is the history teacher who organizes this historical project. The high school level art students learn the elements and principles of art. During the course of the year, they create sculptures, paintings and even whirligigs which are judged by three of Wilson’s educators and artists.

Carole Stoiber, Greenfield’s K-12 art teacher, instructs these students and promotes art appreciation at the upper school level by sponsoring the annual show, which provides opportunities to build art portfolios and cite their work on college applications. Ribbons and recognition are given for all exceptional efforts. The students’ work will be in both the Cooke Student Gallery and the Lowe Celebration Gallery on the second floor of the Arts Council building.

The Arts Council will also present the annual First District Congressional Art Competition, on view Apr. 19 - 23, 2011, featuring works by high school students from the First Congressional District in NC. A reception will be held for this exhibit on Apr. 23, starting at 11am.

For further information check our NC Institutional Gallery listings, call the center at 919/291-4329 or visit (

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