Alabama Heritage, Wild & Rural

Through October 17th, the 3rd Annual Alabama Heritage, Wild & Rural show is on at Red Dot Gallery (1001 Stuart St, 205/870.7608) in the Homewood neighborhood of B’ham. The gallery also does drawing, painting, and pottery classes.

This is ‘Scavenged Heart’ by Randy Gachet:

See what the crow is made out of?

In his artist statement, he says:

My work involves reclamation and transformation. In late the 1990s I found myself compelled to collect jettisoned tire remnants and detritus found accumulating on urban and suburban highways. The crow, a supreme scavenger, figures prominently in this environ and subsequently in my work, simultaneously as a symbol of renewal and of fate. The crow’s ability to find sustenance in decay provides a cyclical metaphor my work revolves around. Early on, I fashioned small scale sculptures and assemblages featuring crow forms made from strips of tire evoking eeriness found in Southern narratives.

He will be at Kentuck again this year.
Selection of pottery by Doris Blum from Tuscaloosa:

There were a couple of tables by Hillwood Farm Rustic Furniture in Attalla:

The tag on this table read, “‘Reflections of a Starry Night’ table constructed old cedar wood found in an Etowah County barn – side and back trim of mountain laurel collected from an area being cleared in NC. Front trim – cedar driftwood and the inspiration for the name.

Basketry by Marilyn Huey of Springville:

‘End of the Day’ by Eric Johnson:

‘Head Waters’ by Scott Bennett:

There are works of at least twelve other artists as part of the exhibit (nice!) including Bethanne Hill.

What really caught my attention was the work of Dori DeCamillis, who owns the gallery along with her husband, Scott Bennett. This is Dori’s ‘Bounty: Jones Valley Farm’ :

It’s not only a painting (oil on wood), but it has ceramic tiles – all the vegetables. Dori explains:
“This painting is a tribute to all Alabama small, sustainable farms…

(on how the painting developed…) I began with botanicals and emerged with a rather kitchen-like appearance, appropriate because my connection with farms and food is most often celebrated in the kitchen…

The background of the center piece uses imagery that reminds me of an opulent palace – a version of abundance – where tiny fruit, veggies, and flowers are displayed on pedestals…

The tiles are made from molds of vegetables from my own garden, Jones Valley Urban Farm, and other small local farms…

What’s really to see is Dori’s series of ‘Paintings of Alabama Places‘ – the entire set is here and my favorite of course is the one she did of Tom Hendrix’s wall in NE Alabama. The funny part was that when I walked in, she said something like “Ginger, DeepFriedKudzu?” and it turned out that Tom had told her about me (latest post about him here). So nice!
The Mobile Museum of Art will be doing an exhibit with Dori’s ‘Paintings of Alabama Places’ in spring 2011, and that show will later tour the southeast.

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