Artist: Charles Brouwer, Willis, VA
Media: Locust wood, preservative stain and screws
Location: The Downtown Center
There is an old African-American spiritual – “My Lord what a morning..... when the stars begin to fall”. It is a powerful song and image and it inspired me to try to capture something of this moment of spiritual ecstasy in a sculpture.
1946 — born in Holland, Michigan and spent his first 20 years living in the same house on Maple and 15th St. and attended Holland Christian Schools and Maple Ave. Christian Reformed Church.
1966 — married (and is still married to) Glenda DeKam.
1969 — moved to Portland Oregon where Charlie fulfilled his military obligations as a Conscientious Objector by working at the University of Oregon Medical School. He also attended Art classes at Portland State University and daughter Jennifer was born in 1970.
1974 — moved to Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia to teach Art at Fig Tree High Public School and daughter Emily was born in 1975.
1976 — moved to Portage, Michigan to teach Art at Kalamazoo Christian High School and attended Western Michigan University where he completed an MA in Painting and an MFA in Sculpture.
1987 — moved to Radford, Virginia to teach Art at Radford University.
2008 — retired from teaching in order to make and exhibit art full time.
Now — Charlie and Glenda live in Floyd County in the Blue Ridge Mountains of rural SW Virginia in a 100 year-old farmhouse they have renovated. 9 acres of open fields and woods, with 20 outdoor sculptures placed along a 1/2 mile walking trail, surround the house and studio. Charlie calls their place "Out There" because of its remote location at the end of 1 & 1/2 miles of gravel roads but, also because he believes that art can point us towards thoughts, feelings, and meanings beyond our immediate experience.
Visit charliebrouwer.com to learn more about Charles Brouwer.
Artist: Robert Levin, Burnsville, NC
Media: Wood, stone, and steel
Location: Bristol, TN Courthouse
I have been working on a series of sculptures made of locust wood and native stone. The form is based on an Arch or Bridge, which I think of as a metaphor for the process of making art. Art serves as a bridge between the invisible and visible, the bridge between an idea and its final form. The process of bridging that gap is the work we do with our hands and our hearts. It also symbolizes the transformation that takes place within the person who is making the work... we always end up in a different place than where we began. The intent of this piece is to provide a sense of transition while combining internal tension with balance, gesture, and a sense of uplift.
Robert Levin was born and raised in Baltimore and currently lives and works near Burnsville, NC. He was formerly the Resident Glass Artist at Penland School of Crafts, and has taught in many exotic places such as Ireland, New Zealand, Rochester, Cleveland and Penland. He has exhibited widely in the U.S., Europe, Japan, and the former Soviet Union. His work is in numerous public and private collections, including the Corning Museum of Glass, the Museum of American Glass, the Contemporary Glass Museum in Madrid, the Mint Museum, the High Museum in Atlanta, the Museum of Arts and Design in NYC, and the Ebeltoft Glasmuseum in Denmark. He has received a Southern Arts Federation/NEA Visual Arts Fellowship, two North Carolina Arts Council Fellowships, and a NCAC Project Grant. His work has been featured in magazines such as American Craft, New Zealand Crafts, Craft Arts International, New Glass Review, as well as in books such as An Introduction to Visual Literacy, Contemporary American Craft Art, Contemporary Glass, and Masterpieces of American Glass. He is included in Who's Who in American Art, The Dictionary of International Biography, and Who's Who in America. He describes his work as "sort of a blend of Late Venetian and Early Neurotic."
Visit robertlevin.com to learn more about Robert Levin.
Artist: Mark Connelly, Brevard, NC
Media: Steel with marine-grade primer and paint
Location: Anderson Street Park
Drekar is the Norse word for dragon ship. This piece is an abstract version of a prow that was often featured on the infamous Viking vessels. My desire is to incorporate this steel prow into an overall setting by using landscape materials to complete the vision. Snowmound spirea will form the hull by taking on the shape of shields with a dogwood tree as a sail, all gliding across waves of rug juniper.
Mark Connelley is a sculptor and landscape artist with a contemporary take on ancient themes. He works primarily in steel and natural materials to create large-scale sculpture and
With a background in landscape architecture and land planning, Mark spent many years designing for the resort and hospitality industry with projects throughout the world. His extensive experience, which involved conceptual design, master planning, sculpture park and garden design, and detailed design, exposed him to a wide variety of art, architecture, and cultures.
Now as a sculptor, Mark not only creates large-scale sculpture but also enjoys creating the environments in which the pieces are featured and the collaborative process that is
involved with every project.
The process begins long before the metal is cut. Influenced by ancient art and themes, Mark relies heavily on research as inspiration, sketches to begin exploring ideas, and
computer-generated models to plan the size and shape of the materials to be used.
Working primarily in steel and natural materials such as stone and concrete, Mark prefers to create large scale pieces that are designed for their specific environment. Things like trees, shrubs, walkways, and views are given as much consideration as the patinas and finishes that complete the exterior of each piece.
For this artist, quality workmanship and hands-on attention are just as important as the design itself. Every piece is an original and every effort is made to ensure that no detail
has been overlooked.
Visit macworks-art.com to learn more about Mark Connelly.
Artist: Adam Walls, Laurinburg, NC
Location: Anderson Street Park
This work represents two people who are no longer together, but still share a place in their hearts for something shared.
Adam Walls was born in South Carolina where he would later receive a BFA in art education from Limestone College and an MFA in Sculpture from Winthrop University. Adam has served as an educator in the public school system in South Carolina for six years and as a professor at USC Upstate and Limestone College for two years. Adam now serves as the head of the sculpture program at UNC Pembroke where is now entering his fifth year. Adam Walls has been working as a sculptor in the realm of public art for the past ten years and has exhibited sculpture in more than forty nationally juried sculpture competitions.
Visit sculpturebyadamwalls.com to learn more about Adam Walls.
Artist: Carl Billingsley, Ayden, NC
Media: Painted steel
Location: WCYB Fountain Plaza
Prism Arc is a series that explores the dynamics of color. Different sections of each sculpture are painted in primary colors is such a way that the reflections from these areas creates secondary colors. Each sculpture is constantly changing color as the sun tracks through the sky. They are ideally suited to express the concept of color dynamic. These sculptures are designed to present a completely different shape and color arrangement from each angle of view and to provide an ever-changing dynamic of form and color throughout 360 degrees of space.
Visit billingsleyatelier.com to learn more about Carl Billingsley.
Artist: Hanna Jubran, Grimesland, NC
Media: Steel, cast iron and paint
Location: Bristol Public Library Plaza
The Three Graces are made of cast iron and fabricated steel. The work depicts the three graces from Greek Mythology.
Hanna Jubran received his M.F.A. in Sculpture from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and is currently a Sculpture Professor at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. Hanna’s work addresses the concepts of time, movement, balance and space. Each sculpture occupies and creates its own reality influenced by its immediate surroundings. The work does not rely on one media to evoke the intended response, but takes advantage of compatible materials such as wood, granite, steel, stainless steel, iron and bronze. Hanna regularly participates in International art shows, competitions and symposiums. Some of his most recent activities are: The creation of “A Monument to a Century of Flight” in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina; The International Sculpture Biennale, Chaco, Argentina; The Elements of the Earth Symposium at Pedvale Sculpture Park, Sabile, Latvia, The International Wood carving Symposium, St. Blasien, Germany; The International Sculpture Symposium in Pirkkala, Finland; Tultepec, Mexico Monumental Sculpture Symposium; The international sculpture symposiums in: Jish, Israel; Ma’llot, Israel; Cayo Largo, Cuba; Granby, Canada; Kemijarvi, Finland; The international Sculpture Symposium and Conference in Europas Parkas, Vilnius, Lithuania and The Toyamura International Sculpture Biennial at Toyamura Japan-where he received semi-grand prize. Every symposium Hanna participates in, the sculpture created is retained as part of the town or organizations permanent collection. Hanna is consistent in his pursuit of creating enjoyable sculptures for private and corporate collections.
Visit hannajubran.com to learn more about Hanna Jubran.
Artist: Davis Whitfield, Mountain City, TN
Media: Weathering steel (Cor-Ten)
Location: Cumberland Square Park
For me, public sculpture is about engaging people to interact with art. By igniting the imagination of the viewer, sculpture allows us to revisit our childhoods, thinking in ways that most of us have not thought in ages. Public sculpture can be interpreted however the viewer pleases. Recognizable shapes and forms become expressed in new context. For this reason, I typically shy away from speaking specifically about my inspiration for a particular piece of sculpture so I do not limit what the viewer may come up with on their own. “Ender’s Enigma” was inspired by the novel “Ender’s Game” by Orson Scott Card and the tendency for humanity to destroy that which it does not understand
I have been artist for as long as I have memories. Although my father wanted me to major in Biology to take over the family business in Mississippi, I went against tradition and graduated with a double major in painting and sculpture from Delta State University in 2002. For eight years I have been privileged enough to be the apprentice to renowned sculptor and painter, Wayne Trapp. My partnership with Wayne has allowed for my continual growth in making large, outdoor abstract art and when not working with Wayne, I spend my time creating sculpture to express my own voice in the world of art.
Visit daviswhitfield.com to learn more about Davis Whitfield.
Artist: Marvin Tadlock, Bristol, VA
Media: Steel and stainless steel
Location: Bristol Public Library Plaza
“Ararat” is a sculpture that incorporates windows or portals in its design. In the windows are highly abstract images made of stainless steel. There are two stainless fish on the upright base, and a stainless puddle on the main base. There are three stainless birds perched on the top of the piece. I like the idea of seeing through the windows of the piece, as well as having object, figures, projecting through them. I named the piece “Ararat,” taken from Mount Ararat, a mountain in Turkey where Noah’s Ark is thought to have come aground.
Visit marvintadlock.com to learn more about Marvin Tadlock.