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Mountains, Legends and Lore at the Avery Gallery Portrays Regional Characters like Cherokee Witches

The image is a collage by Lillian Trettin.

June 4, 2012. Currently on view at the Avery Gallery, Mountains, Legends and Lore combines the two-dimensional artwork of Lillian Trettin and Linda Elksnin with the face jug pottery of Remo Piracci. This show will be on display until the beginning of July, with a reception on June 23.

Lillian Trettin is an artist who, despite having traveled widely and lived in other places, she claims to be permanently “South haunted.” Her artwork is figurative and narrative with a style derived from comics, sometimes with an absurdist twist or a dark satirical side. Lillian prefers scissors and drawing instruments to paint brushes. She makes cut-paper collages from handmade, hand painted and commercial paper. For this exhibit, she created a series of cut-paper collages portraying regional characters such as Spearfinger (a Cherokee witch), a mountain woman transformed into an owl, an eccentric mountain hermit, a winged mountain cavalry and ghostly moonshiners of the past.

Linda Elksnin’s inspiration comes from eclectic sources, including textiles, self-taught and outsider artists and mainstream artists such as Mark Rothko and Romare Bearden. She creates paintings by layering watercolor and gouache on a painted background and the building up color and texture using paint and colored pencils. Whether her subject matter is abstract or loosely based on reality, the common thread of all of her work is color and graphically pleasing design.

Potter Remo Piracci has been working in the mud for over six years, transitioning from 30 years as a wood craftsman. Remo says, “My interest started with face jugs and as I studied, I wanted to express not just the faces, but the emotion projected in the great Native American chiefs as they faced the demise of their tribes and heritage.”

Speaking about his learning process, Remo claims, “I feel I have to take risks and from mistakes you learn. So things break or a part doesn’t fit or a pot cracks…from here you learn and perfect your technique.”

To see the learned techniques of all three artists, visit the Avery Gallery. Open Wednesday through Saturday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., and Sundays from 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. This exhibit will also have a reception, held during the Old Hampton Store’s annual Cornbread Cook-Off on June 23. During the afternoon, both Lillian and Linda will be demonstrating their artistic processes. The reception will be from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. that evening.

For more information, call the Arts Council at 828-733-0054 or email info@averycountyartscouncil.org.