SC: Spartanburg

This year’s juror John Nolan, curator of the Bob Jones Museum, selected winners of the Artists’ Guild of Spartanburg’s 42nd Annual Juried Exhibition:


Rooted by Lewis Brown


     Best in Show: “Rooted” by Lewis Brown is a Spartanburg County artist using wood as the primary medium in creating organic abstract sculptures. A self-taught artist, Brown has shown and sold Santa woodcarvings along the East Coast since 1987. Collectors of his work in Spartanburg will remember his “Santa Through the Ages” series that reflects the history and culture of Saint Nicholas.

     While his wooden Santas were painted, his more recent sculptural work now incorporates clear finishes showing the natural wood. One theme for his new work reveals human actions negatively influencing the life of our planet. Brown’s reverence and love of trees is also reflected in his work.


Exuberant, Exploding, Pulsating Dance of Creation by Jim Creal


     2-D Award of Excellence: “Exuberant, Exploding, Pulsating Dance of Creation” by Jim Creal, is a visual artist engaged in the creation of cohesive bodies of original work through select traditional fine art print processes. He creates landscapes, still-lifes and non-representational images through lithographic, etching and monotype print processes. Creal teaches in the South Carolina Arts in Education Program.


Taking The Stage by Kate Thayer


     2-D Award of Excellence: “Taking Stage” by Kate Thayer whose aim as an artist has always been that of “attempting to kindle in the viewer the same kind of emotional exhilaration that [she experiences] when [she is] seduced by a scene that asks to be brought to life in pastel or oils.” It is her passion to bring her skills and years of study to “personal interpretation of the beauty and mysteries of nature to those who encounter [her] paintings.”

     Thayer is a believer that art is our way of enhancing people’s lives. For Thayer, there is always a spiritual dimension in life that is best captured and perpetuated in art, especially in painting and what she considers its twin: poetry. Her work is akin to poetry in that they are “wordless encounters with the often stunning voices of nature – of its colors and forms – that we rarely notice.” Thayer aims to bring to the viewer what he or she may not have noticed to “raise our spirits to a higher level of being.” Her work attempts to surround audiences and beckons viewers to silently contemplate the various potential meanings.


Tea in Tipperary by Cynthia Carden Gibson


     3-D Award of Excellence: “Tea in Tipperary” by Cynthia Carden-Gibson has been a maker from childhood and showed a strong desire to design fashion early in life. She has worked as a photographer’s set stylist, food stylist and as a visual merchandiser for a major jeweler. Gibson discovered pyrography in 2008 and, with study, has developed her own unique style of pyro-engraving. Cynthia’s love for fashion and design proves to be the “perfect inspiration” for her work.

   FlyAway by Tom Flowers


     3-D Award of Excellence: “Fly Away” by Tom Flowers works with both mixed media and oils. He is well regarded as an art educator, filling the post of Art Department Chair at Furman University for thirty years between 1959 and 1989 when he retired. Earlier in his teaching career, he was Chairman of the Art Department at Ottawa University between 1956 and 1958, and a professor of sculpture at East Carolina University between 1958 and 1959. Flowers’s paintings have been exhibited widely between 1958 and the present. He participated in the 1965 18th Annual Guild of South Carolina Artists Exhibition and the 1969 11th Annual Southern Contemporary Artists Exhibition in Alabama. In 1988, Flowers was featured at the Asheville Art Museum. His awards include a prize for Art in Architecture issued by the South Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in 1977, and a Best in Show Award at the Spring Art Exhibition in Lancaster, South Carolina, among others. Flowers is currently a member of the Guild of South Carolina Artists and the Greenville Artists Guild. He is co-owner of Liberty, South Carolina’s Tate Gallery. His works are in the permanent collection of the Greenville County Museum of Art, the Columbia Museum of Art, and the Florence Museum.

 Dancing in the Light by Amy Weaver

2015 People’s Choice Award: “Dancing in the Light” by Amy Weaver. In 2009, she began painting as a hobby and eventually increasing her knowledge and skills through educational courses and workshops. While she continues to seek all avenues of learning, “Painting is a way for me to reveal feelings about my favorite subject: nature. I love to mix and mingle colors on paper, capturing the dramatic and/or subtle effects to reveal light, shadow, textures, and forms. I strive for confident, enthusiastic brushwork, the maximizing of color’s value and intensity range and a fresh painterly approach, the result appearing effortless,” she said.

Published by on October 2015. Filed under News (Time related), Palette News Arts Network/PNAN, PaletteBoards Section, South Carolina. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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