I had a hometown friend visiting me in Asheville last week. Even though I was working everyday I did my best to show him around town. One of the spots I walked him through was Woolworth Walk, the art and craft gallery/old fashioned soda fountain. I’m guilty of speed browsing these type of group galleries, but this time, for the first time probably, two artists’ work grabbed a hold of my short attention span.
First there was John Nebraska’s gallery space. I don’t think I have it in me to wax poetic about his work. To put it simply, it made me happy. I wasn’t sure of his methods or medium, but after looking him up online, it appears he is a commercial illustrator. His commissioned work seems to be digital. His fine art, the pieces I was looking at, are a mix of acrylic paints, pastels, collage, and probably more.
Part of the joy of finding Asheville art I love is knowing that the person who created it is part of the small world I’m living in. They are walking about, thinking about creating their pictures, anonymously, quietly. I don’t know them, but they are puttering around town beside me.
And then pottery, for the first time ever, caught my eye. I don’t mean I don’t like or respect pottery. I absolutely do, but it’s not what usually pulls me. As a painter, I think I naturally enjoy looking at and inspecting the flat.
The cups and plates of Mud Stuffing Pottery really amused me. I think it was the clean shapes and whiteness, layered with what I assume is a collage and glaze type technique of found images. There are layers to the simplicity.
My plan for a while has been to blog about local art I find in Asheville, and not just from white walled exhibitions. There is a lot going on here. Most businesses seem to try to incorporate local art into their decor. Below are some pieces I’ve seen on display at Harvest Records, a local indie record shop near my place in West Asheville.
It took me a while to figure out who the artist was. There wasn’t any attribution tags below the works which was a bit frustrating. Maybe if I was truly a local I’d already know who she was. I stumbled across her work looking at other local profiles on instagram. She goes by Alligoodart and you can see more of her work on her instagram feed. I’m going to go out on a limb and assume her name is Alli Good.
It’s interesting to me that I immediately had the gut assumption that this work was created by a man. The grotesque stylization and bright, acidic colors are things I associate with male artists. It reminded me of work by Ryan Heshka, Travis Lampe, and Gary Basemen, but then I realized another artist it reminded me of was Camilla Rose Garcia, a woman, not exactly of course, but they are all in the same extended family. The detail on the turtle necks, painted patterns of strawberries and cherries, should have clued me into the work being created by a woman. I remember growing up wearing such things usually paired with too tight corduroy pants.
In the end though, it doesn’t matter what the gender of the artist it. It’s just interesting to examine your immediate assumptions about anything.
Please check out her instagram feed. She seems to update it very frequently with not just paintings, but tons of ink drawings. Hooray for gross art! Our bodies are itchy and prickly vehicles that makes all sorts of funky fluids and noises. Girls are especially under pressure to deal with monthly weirdness all while expected to pretend our bods are fragrant and soft spring meadows. Okay, I’m being silly, but it’s true. I just like art created by girls that pokes fun at bodies.
You can read more about art and artists I’ve come across in asheville in this post or by searching my other peoples art tag.