July Issue 2000
Center of the Earth Gallery in Charlotte, NC's NODA Celebrates With Glass Exhibit
The Center of the Earth Gallery, located in the historic NODA art district in Charlotte, NC, will celebrate the gallery's 12th year with an exhibition of glass. The exhibit, entitled, Vistas V: Penland, is a collaboration with the Penland School of Craft in Penland, NC, will be on display from July 7 through Aug. 12, 2000.
The Penland School of Crafts is a national center for craft education located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of NC. Lucy Morgan founded the school in 1923 primarily for weavers. In 1929, other crafts were added and the school began to raise funds, acquire property, and construct buildings. Since that time, Penland has grown to encompass about 400 acres and 41 structures. Today, over 1,200 people come each year seeking instruction in ten craft media.
The exhibit will feature work by former Penland glass artists including: Robert Gardner, Robert Levin, Walter Lieberman, John Littleton & Kate Vogel, Paul Marioni, Robert Mickelsen, Mark Pieser, Sally Prasch, Emilio Santini and Ann Trouter. Lampworking, casting and blown glass techniques will all be represented in the exhibit. A percentage of sales proceeds will benefit Penland School of Craft.
In 1985 artists Ruth Ava Lyons and J. Paul Sires pioneered the Historic North Charlotte Arts District (NODA). These artists discovered the abandoned main street of a mill village historically known as the Town of North Charlotte. Only 2.5 miles from Uptown Charlotte, this mill village prospered when "cotton was king" and collapsed when the mills closed. The couple restored the 1927 Lowder Building which now houses Center of the Earth Gallery, a leading gallery for contemporary art in the Southeast. Shortly thereafter, other artists and businesses began to move into the area. Lyons and Sires continue to renovate nearby buildings as part of an ongoing revitalization effort. The latest addition to this team of art enthusiasts is gallery manager, Tonya Cribb whose own background and interest in fine art is a continuation of the enthusiasm of Center of the Earth's proprietors. The gallery was recognized with a Governor's Award for Businesses in the Arts for its impact on the community including the popular bi-monthly gallery crawls. The gallery was voted "Best Gallery" by readers of Creative Loafing magazine in 1995, '96, '97 & '98.
A Fulbright Fellow and graduate of Cranbrook Academy of Art, Ruth Ava Lyons has received grants and awards from the Chatauqua Institution, the North Carolina Arts Council, the American Scandinavian Foundation, the North Carolina Print & Drawing Society and many others. Her recent public art commissions include compositions in the ancient art of glass mosaic and a large-scale mural for the Charlotte Convention Center. Lyon's work has been included in over 100 exhibitions, and her paintings can be found in numerous public collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, the Hearst Corporation, and the National Museum of Women in the Arts.
Paul Sires has exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the United States and abroad, including the Phoenix Museum, the Cleveland Museum, and the Pallazzo Venezia in Rome. Sires is the recipient of fellowships from the North Carolina Arts Council, the Ohio Arts Council, and the NEA. He received his MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art. The Arts & Science Council, in Charlotte, recently commissioned Sires to create a series of sculptures for its Endowment Campaign.
For further info check our NC Commercial Gallery listings or call the gallery at 704/375-5756, e-mail at (firstname.lastname@example.org) or on the web at (http://www.centerof the earth.com).
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