Wimi is powdering her knees in the bathroom at SECCA in Winston-Salem. Look at that art deco wallpaper! Gorgeous! It's original to the James G. Hanes house, now home to the Southeaster Center for Contemporary Art.
Outside the bathroom, we espied and Art-O-Matic. These machines, conceived in Winston-Salem in 1997, are converted cigarette machines that now dispense wee art for $5. Very cool. There are now 82 Art-O-Mats around the country, but this is the birthplace (btw, the Art-O-Mat folks accept submissions. Check out the Web site for details.)
But the real reason Wimi was there was to check out the quilts for the exhibit going on there. The works of seven quilters will be on dispaly there until Jan. 4 And they are stunning! In photographs, the quilts are pretty amazing, but in person they are staggering. Here's the man who pulled them together:
This is Mark Leach, director of SECCA. He came into the arts business in part through a love of pottery. Leach came to SECCA in January after working as curator at Charlotte's Mint Museum of Art, then director and chief curator of the Mint Museum
of Craft + Design. He had a swell time choosing the quilts. His favorite is the one he is looking at. You'll feel the same way. Just when you think Nancy Crow has outdone everyone with her brilliant juxtaposition of color, you'll look at the intense laying of material, thread and -- is that paint! -- of Sue Benner's work and think, "That is the most stunning!" Until you see the photo-image transfers of Michael James and the way the pixelated pieces create a dramatic landscape. And so on, through the works of Eleanor McCain, Ellen Oppenheimer, Dorothy Caldwell and Ana Lisa Hedstrom. It's an abundance, to be sure, and you're not likely to see such a gathering of the work of big-name quilters in one place -- well, ever.
And, if it makes you swoony, you can go powder your knees.
But, wait, that's not all! There is also an exhibit of the photographs of Dutch artist Erwin Olaf, put together by this fellow:
This is Steven Matijcio, SECCA's new curator. He's fresh from Canada and thrilled to be in Winston-Salem. Olaf's works are intriguing and painterly. Wimi thinks you'll like them.
And, if that's not enough, there is also a series of '60s-inspired videos in a show called Psychedelic.
You can read all about it in this Sunday's Arts & Living section, on the Arts pages, where we teamed up with co-writer (and spouse) Joe Miller to write about the show. (Joe's a little shy about his artsy side.)
If you're heading there with a reluctant spouse, give Joe a shout and he'll tip you off to good hiking & biking trails in Winston-Salem to keep the Other Half happy.
Happy (art) trails!