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Carlton Gallery Commemorates 30th Anniversary with July 7 Fete and ‘We Celebrate Art’ Summer Exhibition

Iris Flow I, Debbie Arnold

July 2, 2012. Art galleries come and go in the area, but one that has stood the test of time and continues to bring fine art to Western North Carolina is Carlton Gallery. From a small fiber studio begun in 1982, Carlton Gallery, a fine art contemporary gallery, is observing its 30th year.

Carlton Gallery is commemorating its 30th Anniversary with a “We Celebrate Art” Summer Group Exhibition and Fete beginning on Saturday, July 7, 2-5 p.m. Lively music, delicious food, along with artists’ painting demonstrations can be enjoyed by the local community, visitors and gallery patrons in celebration of this milestone.

Gallery owner, Toni Carlton, extends a heartfelt appreciation to all the artists, literally hundreds, who have created, inspired and supported her vision to promote the work of local, regional, national and international artists. Their fine art and contemporary crafts have graced the walls, pedestals, jewelry cases and shelves. For 21 years the gallery was located in the Creekside Building, formerly known as the Kiln Room in the 1970s. In 2008 Carlton Gallery moved across Hwy 105 into the former Antonaccio Fine Art Gallery.

“After many floods, challenges with beavers, raccoons and a leaky roof, it was a little sad to say good-bye to the Creekside Building,” Toni said, “but we are happy in our perfect home today.”

One of the first artists represented by the gallery who continues to exhibit paintings is local artist, Warren Dennis. He taught Toni Carlton drawing and art appreciation classes at ASU, and she thanks him for his support and well being for the past 30 years. Much gratitude is also extended to other long standing artists, Debbie Arnold, Vae Hamilton and Andrew Braitman for their continued dedication to the gallery.

Prayers, Toni Carlton

The 30th Summer Group Exhibition features new work in oils by gallery artists Warren Dennis, Egi Antonaccio, Andrew Braitman, Roy Nichols, Sharon Rusch Shaver, Brian Carney and Rainelle Meridith in their distinct artistic expression of landscapes, flora, animals and figurative fills the gallery with an eclectic mix of exceptional art.

Local artist Debbie Arnold exhibits paintings in acrylics rendered in her own new technique of pouring paints to create complex effects with textures and color. Her art work is infinitely her distinct style due to personal techniques and inspirations. The acrylic mixed media paintings of Vae Hamilton express her great love of horses and her talent to capture the spirit of the horse on canvas.

Talented painter, Kate Worm, whose water color/gouache figurative work displays her deep understanding of the necessary balance between warm and cool colors. She has acquired this talent by years of diligent observation and a gathering of visual information in lieu of a linear way of thinking.

New gallery artist, Edie Maney, exhibits bold and commanding non objective acrylic abstracts utilizing brushes, palette knives and printmaker brayers. Color is the determining factor for the shapes and textures in the design and composition of her thought-provoking work.

Carlton Gallery is noted for its diverse collection of work in glass and wood. The blown glass Acro Bags by John Littleton and Kate Vogel display a lively interplay which contrasts with the satin look of the component parts which are supported by one another. In a similar vein, their cast glass “Hands” sculpture is made from molds of mother and daughter’s hands which explore the endless possibilities of working in glass. Fine hand crafted tables by Keith Allen feature characteristics of the wood’s natural defects contrasted with strong design employing mortise and tendon, dovetails and butterfly inlays as part of the design.

Carlton’s ongoing “Whispers of Life’s Journey” exhibition continues through July 22 and is also a feature of the 30th Anniversary Celebration. Carlton’s mixed media paintings are rendered with a central theme of peace and art blessings. She is immensely pleased when explaining the deeper meaning of her work and witnesses viewers grasping the open heart connection of all cultures.

All are welcome to visit Carlton Gallery for its 30th Anniversary Fete and “We Celebrate Art” Summer Group Exhibition which begins on July 7 and continues through September 15. Enjoy an afternoon filled with music, food, painting demonstrations and community spirit. The gallery is located 10 miles south of Boone and 7 miles north of Linville on N.C. 105 in the Grandfather Mountain community.

For more information on artists, exhibitions or workshops, call 828-963-4288 or www.carltonartgallery.com.