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“From Here” The bioregional imagination in recent art by Appalachian State University Faculty Exhibiting January 18 – February 26, 2021

“From Here” is a group exhibition featuring recent work made by faculty at Appalachian State University inspired by the landscape, ecology, and cultures that make up North Carolina’s High Country. It affirms the deep connections these artists have to the region they call home, and it raises questions about what it means to be of a place, in a time where we increasingly live our lives online and in connection to other people and places around the world.

The artists included in the exhibition are: Adam Adcock, Bailey Arend,Anna Buckner, AndrewCaldwell,Martin Church, Rosa Dargan Powers, Erin Ethridge, Maggie Flanigan, Tom Hansell, Mark Nystrom, Lila Shull and Jacob Francek, Joshua White, Chip Williams and Ann Ward, and Cheryl Zibisky.

Collectively these artists have contributed more than twenty works in many different media that address the theme of the exhibition from a wide variety of perspectives. Among the art included are selections from Bailey Arend’s Deciduous Poses, a series of playful performative photographs, in which the artist uses his own body to mirror and interact with forest trees, plants, and rock formations to explore how he communicates with and is shaped by the environment he lives with. Rosa Dargan Powers’ fairytale-like paper cut images of pathways through woods filled with coyotes, mountain lions, and bears are based on her dreams. These works speak similarly to how living with the region’s forests and its creatures seeps into her imagination and informs her sense of self. The idea of being in a dynamic relationship to the land shows up in a different way in the tintype photographs of Joshua White’s Breaking Ground series, which documents the daily life and seasonal cycles of life on a local farm that blends traditional and contemporary farming practices. Tom Hansell’s short experimental films, featuring plastic and organic matter collected from a branch of the New River that runs through the artist’s backyard, draw forth signs of human interaction with this fresh water ecosystem and Hansell’s
own connection to it in ways that are both scientific and poetic. Along with the exhibition, we are planning several public programs including an online panel discussion with some of the participating artists about their work and life and a poetry reading of new ecologically themed poems with Katherine Kirkpatrick, poet and professor in the English Department at Appalachian University.

The Hiddenite Center would like to thank Jennie Carlisle, Smith Gallery Director and faculty with the Art Department at Appalachian State University, for her work in hanging the exhibit and coordinating with the faculty participants, as well as, the faculty artists from the Appalachian State Art Department for participating in the exhibition of their creative works.

The Gallery is OPEN FREE to the public with masks and social distancing on the second floor of the Lucas Mansion M-F 10-4:30, Sat 10-3

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