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Caldwell Arts Center

PRESS RELEASE – For Immediate Release

From:Cathy McCoy, Administrative Assistant

Caldwell Arts Council, 601 College Avenue, Lenoir NC

Contact:828-754-2486 or

Date:July 23, 2012

Lenoir/Caldwell County – 

The Caldwell Arts Council is pleased to announce their September  exhibition “FRIENDS” featuring artwork by 15 artists, including that of internationally-known sculptor/jewelry maker Bob Ebendorf, and CCC&TI’s Visual Arts Program Director Jane Harrison.  An opening reception is scheduled for Friday, August 31, 5-7:30pm.

The Caldwell Arts Council is excited to host this outstanding collection of artists.  The artwork on display will range from jewelry to printmaking, sculpture to painting.  In the words of our artists: “Bob Ebendorf and Jane Harrison have gathered together a small group of both communal and individual friends who share the same cause – making art.  Paths cross and intertwine, critique sessions are shared, information exchanged, we are taught and we teach. We search out those with whom we share common dialogue and aesthetic ideas; and these conversations, meetings, shared imagery makes a difference in who we become as artists.  With this small show, we honor and acknowledge the value of the shared cause.”

Please join us for this magnificent exhibition.  

The Caldwell Arts Council is located at 601 College Avenue in downtown Lenoir, and is open Tuesday-Friday 9am-5pm.  For more information, call (828) 754-2486 or visit the website

This project is supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources.  

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First Friday Focus Philadelphia


First Friday Focus

City Paper‘s First Friday Hit-list

Snyderman-Works Gallery

The best time to find trash, Kim Alsbrooks says, is right after New Year’s.

She goes to the drag known as “Two Street” (aka Second Street) in South Philly, the site of the Mummers’ after-party. Along with booze-soaked feathers and crushed sequins, the streets are lined with her preferred garbage: smashed aluminum cans. 

Alsbrooks paints tiny, delicate portraits of aristocratic men and women onto Colt 45, Olde English and Arizona Iced Tea cans, crushed flat as coins by a penny press. Displayed in the group show “Recovered Delights,” her oil works poke fun at — and holes in — the “finer” things in life.

“It’s a joke,” she says. “It makes fun of all the things that are held up in society.”

That includes politicians, rich folks, revered families and classical art. The juxtaposition of a traditional portrait of an 18th-century gentleman and a cruddy beer can raises all sorts of questions about class, art and beauty. The pieces can also give you a good dose of cognitive dissonance.

“With the juxtaposition of the portraits from museums, once painted on ivory, now on flattened trash of beer cans and fast food, the artist sets out to even the playing field, challenging the perception of the social elite in today’s society,” explains Alsbrooks in a statement.

Alsbrooks, a Philly-based, West-Prize-winning artist, is joined by other found-object virtuosos like Randall Cleaver, Judith Hoyt and Bill Reid. The works include playful porcelain masks, colorful sculptures made of coffee filters and serious examinations of childhood.

Through Aug. 15, opening Fri., July 6, 5:30 p.m., 303 Cherry St., 215-238-9576,

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ECU metals symposium

tin: the element of surprise…

Coinciding with this years symposium, we are also proud to host a traveling exhibition featuring some of the exciting work that is being done in tin.  Curated by Marlene True, this exhibition, which will be housed over at the Mendenhall student center just behind the art building, features some surprising and beautiful work.  Artists to be included in no particular order include:

J. Fred Woell, Robert Ebendorf, Bobby Hansson, Robert Villamagna, Kathryn Cole, Teri Blond, Ted McDonah, Kim Overstreet and Robin Kranitzky, Harriete Estel Berman, Robbie Barber, Tim Lazure, Leonard Streckfus, Judith Hoyt, Ellen Wieske, Marissa Saneholtz, Daniel Anderson, Bryan Petersen, Stephen Yusko, Kelly Robinson, Donna McCullough, Margaret Couch Cogswell, and Jane Wells Harrison.

We hope you all enjoy this wonderful exhibition.

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The Work of Judith Hoyt by Marjorie Simon – © Metalsmith Magazine – Winter 2004

The Work of Judith Hoyt

by Marjorie Simon – © Metalsmith Magazine – Winter 2004

For more than 20 years Judith Hoyt has parsed the human figure in metal and mixed media. Beginning with a salvaged scrap of metal, wood, a book, or other material with a history, she fashions solitary or paired figures, often with a surprised or pensive mien, She is a metallist to the extent that fabricated metal forms provide a ghostly surface on which opaque paint is sparingly applied. The scale is intimate, even in the large wall pieces. Tightly clustered on the studio wall their dialogue buzzes with the silent hum of human voices. To share space with them is to hear their cacophony of silence.

The Work of Judith Hoyt
Figure with Red Face,
mixed media
25 1/2 x 6 x 3/4″
Other Self,
mixed media
23 1/2 x 12 x 1 1/4″

Although academically trained with a BFA in Printmaking from SUNY New Paltz, Hoyt remains outside the “academy” in her worldview. Working intuitively, she identifies with visionary or so called Outsider artists and seems to embody Ken Johnson’s commentary on California assemblage artist George Herms: “[T]he central event around which each work revolve[s] is the quasi magical transformation of waste into art….The redemption of refuse through art may be read as a metaphor for accepting unlovely aspects of the self Hoyt’s work retains a craftsman’s “hand” and arefined intimacy often missing from conventional assemblage. Like sculptors Alison Saar and the early Ellen Driscoll, Hoyt fastens metal directly onto a wooden substructure with tiny brads or metal rivets. Her recent jewelry is now as fully realized as her earlier wall mounted works. She exclusively makes brooches, so the body becomes both the backdrop and the partner the figure carries the figure, like the image born on the torso of Other Self. They’re like sketches or figure studies, not in the least perfunctory, but more like a snapshot than a studio portrait.

The Work of Judith Hoyt
Mystery Oil (brooch).
found metals, copper
3 5/8 x 2 5/8″

The human face has never been more expressive than in these archetypal forms with their somber mouths and prominent noses. They’re never cute or generic, frequently uncertain, always deeply human. The colors, too, are silenced, “lifeless colors, the color of ashes, [which] are used in religious habits to signify mortification, mourning, and humility.”‘ Some are toothless ghosts of indeterminate gender. Elongated necks raise heads above non existent bodies; squat necks disappear into hunched shoulders. Deformed but never repellent, these solitary creatures invite our empathy for the times when we too feel bewildered, unattractive, or alone. And though Hoyt has been working with the figures for decades they seem perfectly suited to a post 9/11 world.

Hoyt has succeeded in resolving the fundamental contradiction for women artists dealing with the figurethat of being both object and maker. Figure with Red Face and Woman with Blue Green Hat recall her series “Women in Housedresses” of a decade ago. Even the smallest brooch is imbued with authenticity and sympathy. Female bodies are never objectified. They live in an America without cable TV or cosmetic surgery. Some figures appear genderless, rather like the way our youth oriented society has unsexed the aged. Since they have no hair, they have no sexuality either, no power, no vital force. The absence of gender identity leaves us free to concentrate on the unifying and human emotions of isolation, abandonment, contemplation, confusion.

The Work of Judith Hoyt
Woman with Blue Green Hat,
mixed media
36 x 11 x 3/4″

As a woman artist, Judith Hoyt has created women who are neither menacing nor nurturing, not sexually alluring, but merely solitary. She frequently chooses to represent androgyny, thus avoiding identifying traditional postures of masculinity or femininity. indeed, she has succeeded in “exposing the instability of gender itself as a continually shifting, fundamentally unstable scaffolding of socially articulated roles and visually and psychically determined identities.” She neither supports nor subverts the existing social order, but seems to inhabit some timeless place outside mainstream society, looking, instead, deeply inward.

Marjorie Simon is a metalsmith and writer based in New Jersey.

In association with SNAG’s

Metalsmith magazine, founded in 1980, is an award winning publication and the only magazine in America devoted to the metal arts.

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