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Artists collaborate for arts centers fall exhibit
Several art enthusiasts attend the opening of the Quinlan Visual Arts Center’s fall exhibits. Four different exhibitions decorate the walls at the Gainesville gallery. - photo by NAT GURLEY

Quinlan Visual Arts Center fall exhibitions

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and closed Sunday

When: Aug. 22 through Oct. 12

Where: 514 Green St. NE, Gainesville

Cost: Free


“8 Ways of Seeing” by Blackberry Creek Artists,
“As We See It” by Sherry Needle and Fran Milner,
“Oh, The Places I Go…” by Cynthia Howard;
“Fashion Modernism: This Is Not a Movie” by Jo Baskerville


Fine works of art, wine and refreshments are making one Gainesville building come alive this fall.

A large crowd of artists and art enthusiasts filled the Quinlan Visual Arts Center last Thursday for the opening of their fall exhibitions. The exhibit, which features local and out-of-town artists, will be on display at the arts center off Green Street through Oct. 12. Admission is free.

One artist’s unique perspective was based on moving art — the art of film.

Virginia native Jo Baskerville contributed his exhibit called “Fashion Modernism: This is Not a Movie,” which combined fashion and modern movies to create a colorful collection of paintings. He said the theme went together, but was not done all at once.

“This is actually a culmination of different work,” he said. “I started out doing shoes, and now I’m doing these widescreen movies. But all my work is inspired by fashion.”

The art features scenes he would create if he made movies, he said.

“With this series, it was basically about some movies that I would like to see,” he said.

Baskerville has featured pieces at the arts center before. He said his work from the past made an impression, so he took his new theme and combined it with fashion paintings. The new shoe paintings took six to seven months to create.

“Most of it was done before the show, but then I went back because the Quinlan asked that I do some of the things that I’ve done in the past,” he said. “So I went back and I did five shoe paintings for them.”

Although it was difficult for him to choose, he said his favorite piece was called “The Coldest Winter.”

“It took a great deal of work to do it, and I tried to make sure that I kept the colors from being the same in each area,” he said.

“I think that would be the best one, because I put a lot of work in it.”

He is looking forward for his next theme: a collection about all different types of heroes.

“It will be a documentary about heroes, painted on walls,” he said.

Baskerville’s goal is always to leave people with a desire to expand their creativity, he said.

“I just want them to be inspired and be creative and realize that you can use all different types of mediums to create art,” he said.

Another exhibit in the main room featured all local artists from the Blue Ridge Mountains. This collection, featuring work from a group called Blackberry Creek Artists, is called “8 Ways of Seeing.”

Since the group is local, many friends came to support the opening, including Debbie Dixon. Her friend, Pat Mahoney, contributed a collection to the show.

She said knowing about the group has made her aware of a presence of great artists in North Georgia.

“(I have learned) that there are a lot of talented people, and I wish I was one of them,” Dixon said. “I’m very impressed with the level of artists that are here. They seem very professional.”

She said her favorite piece, “Relaxed,” is a painting of Pat Mahoney’s husband. She said Mahoney’s portrait captured her personal friend perfectly.

In between browsing through paintings and sculptures, one couple stopped for refreshments to reflect on their favorite pieces of art. Bob and Leila Seyler agreed the most memorable piece was by local artist Betty Beasley, who is part of Blackberry Creek Artists.

The squid sculpture, “Calamari,” is one of the first exhibits to catch your eye when entering the arts center.

“It’s on a piece of driftwood, and it is beautiful,” Bob Seyler said. “You always learn when you come to these (exhibits).”

Leila Seyler said she appreciated meeting the artists behind the paintings and sculptures.

“The important thing is to be able to interact with the artists,” she said.

The artist of their favorite piece said her love for horses inspired her sculpture, which led to paintings as well.

“I started sculpting horses,” Beasley said. “Then I began sculpting live, human models.”

She said the Blackberry Creek group consists of supportive friends who help each other spread their work through shows each month.

“We critique each other’s work, and we are each responsible for finding a show for the rest of the artists,” Beasley said. “Each one of us does a show.”

It is not only the support for each other that makes the artists unique, she said. Beasley said every member of Blackberry Creek has improved because of the shows they have done together.

“In doing this, by staying together every month like this, everybody’s improved so much,” she said. “You couldn’t believe it.”

The fall exhibit also features works from Sherry Needle, Fran Milner and Cynthia Howard.

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