Willis exhibit to welcome guests to Oysters on Telfair

The Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art will stage its seventh annual Oysters on Telfair fundraiser Nov. 3 in the gardens of historic Ware’s Folly. The popular casual-attire event offers an oyster bar, bayou feast and music by the Crosstie Walkers.


Patrons also will get to preview the solo exhibition by William Willis featured in both the main and Creel-Harison galleries at the institute from Nov. 3 through Dec. 13.

Willis is the new Morris Eminent Scholar in Art at Augusta State University. Throughout his distinguished career, Willis has explored the process of creating art, often working with, and reworking, geometric forms and layered images. Born in Alabama, he earned B.A. and M.F.A. degrees from the University of South Florida in Tampa. He has exhibited extensively in New York and Washington, D.C., museums and galleries.

The Gertrude Herbert show marks Willis’s first full exhibition in the Augusta area. A silent auction of original works by area artists will also be part of the evening’s festivities. For more information, call
(706) 722-5495.


FIRST THURSDAY activities Nov. 3 at Midtown will include spotlight art shows by Mark Broome at Summerville Art and Frame; Susan Harris at Crum’s on Central; and Panny Force at Midtown Market, where Sacred Heart Cultural Center has just opened a satellite gift shop.

The evening will include music by Eryn Eubanks and the Family Fold, and the sale of beverage cups will benefit the Lynndale School. Shops will be open from 5 to 8 p.m. Look for Eubanks and family again Nov. 12 at the Kroc Center for another Lynndale benefit.


AMONG THE WEEKEND events Nov. 5 and 6 will be Paint the Town, a promotion conducted by Artists Row galleries. Local artists will be doing live demonstrations from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 5 and from noon to 3 p.m. Nov. 6. Information is available at www.augustaga.org, under special offers; or call Zimmerman Gallery at (706) 774-1006.

• Another weekend event is the annual book sale at the Morris Museum of Art. Tables in the second floor lobby will be filled with bargain books, videos, CDs and LPs, and the museum store will offer a discount on books. Proceeds go to the museum’s Center for the Study of Southern Art, to acquire books and other materials for art research.


THERE ARE SEVERAL events of note scheduled for Nov. 10-12, beginning with the opening of an exhibit by David Swanagin and Mike C. Berry at Sacred Heart Cultural Center. Swanagin is a prolific oil painter specializing in atmospheric landscapes, working in an impressionistic style. He is represented by galleries in Augusta, Atlanta, Nashville and Chattanooga, Tenn., Chicago and in Europe.

Berry creates vibrant, colorful cityscapes and landscapes, often bending and twisting the perspective in his compositions. A graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design, he was recently voted best visual artist of east Tennessee in the Knoxville News Sentinel readers’ poll. The two-man show opens Nov. 10 with a reception from 5 to 8 p.m. and will be on display through Dec. 31.


TERRA COGNITA, the Morris Museum’s contemporary artist lecture series, continues Nov. 10 with a talk by Minnesota-based photographer Alec Soth, who creates large-scale color photographs of people he meets on his journeys. One of his images was chosen for the cover of the Whitney Biennial catalogue in 2004. Soth’s talk will begin at 6 p.m. and a reception will follow. Admission is free.


OPENING AT THE Morris Museum Nov. 12 will be Local Color: Photography in the South, a show drawn from the museum’s photography collection. The exhibit includes 35 photographs dating from the mid-1960s to the present by some of the South’s most important photographers, including Dave Anderson, John Baeder, William Christenberry, William Eggleston, Janos Enyedi, William Greiner, Birney Imes, Greg Kinney, Jim McGuire and Meryl Truett.

According to museum director Kevin Grogan, “Their subjects range from the commonplace – rural landscapes and near-forgotten small towns – to the surreal.” The exhibit, he said, explores and celebrates the region and speaks to the significance of the artist in Southern culture.


AUGUSTA AND THE CIVIL WAR in 1861 will be the topic for a symposium Nov. 11 and 12. The event will begin with the Edward J. Cashin Memorial Woodrow Wilson Lecture, Lincoln as a Southerner, presented by Orville Vernon Burton at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 11 at the Old Medical College of Georgia. The lecture will be followed by a reception.

The symposium will continue at the Morris Museum of Art on Nov. 12 and will include talks by David Connolly on Henry Cumming and the Secession Debate; Erskine Clarke on Augusta and the Formation of a Confederate Church; and Ronald Bailey on African Americans and the Civil War: Causes, Conflict and Consequences. Following lunch and a bus tour of related sites, Lee Ann Caldwell will present a talk at First Presbyterian Church on the topic of Augusta in 1861. The Friday evening event is open to the public free of charge. Advance registration is needed for the Saturday events. Call (706) 828-3876.


ONGOING EXHIBIT: The Lucy Craft Laney Museum of Black History is offering its annual quilt exhibit during November.


SENN DESIGNS will have a jewelry trunk show Nov. 13 from noon to 5 p.m. at the Morris Museum of Art.


NOTABLES: The Morris Museum of Art claimed five awards in the Southeastern Museums Conference publications competition: a gold award in the newsletter and calendar category; a gold award in the brochure and rack card category; and three awards including one gold in the poster category.

• A watermedia painting by Caroline Swanson was selected for the 34th annual juried competition at City Gallery in Charleston, S.C. Thirty paintings chosen from the show will tour throughout South Carolina next year. Her painting, Garden Series #3, previously won second place in the annual exhibition at the MACK in McCormick, S.C.

Lisa J. Marks takes over as executive director of the Art Factory on Nov. 14. Cindy O’Brien, who has held that post for seven years, will focus exclusively on developing an integrated arts curriculum for school districts in the part-time position of program director. Since moving to Augusta in 2009, Marks has served as chairman of Artists Row and recently coordinated the production of ARTie, the Garden City’s Green Dragon for the Westobou Festival.

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