The “Figures” exhibition on First Friday at Macon Arts Alliance brought home a Macon connection who describes his work as “folky pop art.” James Schroeder, a high school history teacher by day, found his history muse in art when he had an epiphany in what he describes as a “creepy junk shop.” He bought some doors and started depicting history with multimedia collages of famous names, which had been mind-numbing statistics to his bored teenaged students.
The results are intense and anything but “folky,” and succeed in giving his students a relevant connection to their past. Several displayed in the gallery are harsh reminders of the struggles of the civil rights movement; others are blithe experiments with elements as common as metal bottle tops. Schroeder is the grandson of Joni Woolf, a well-known former Maconite who was on hand with Jami and Jim Gaudet, James Caldwell, Lisa Moore and Windy Blanks, among other art aficionados who never miss a First Friday opening.
Meg Campbell, one of two ceramicists whose work is included in this month’s show, is an instructor in Macon where her gas fired sculptures are easily recognized. One intriguing bowl invited you to look inside the wavy creation where a face in relief returned your gaze.
The small, intricate sculptures built by Marie Weaver are influenced by her background in graphic design. Weaver now lives in Atlanta where she devotes most of her time to ceramics, although her background also includes printmaking and teaching at the University of Alabama prior to her move to Georgia in 2003.
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Athens resident Bob Hart brought to this exhibition his paintings, which are reminiscent of the French naïf. Patriotism, a subject close to his heart, is a recurring theme in his canvases and was the inspiration for the memorial garden he developed on his Clarke County property honoring the victims of 9/11.
With acrylics on birch planks, Judy Shreve tells tales straight out of fairy tale books with a mix of the abstract and fantasy. Friday night in the gallery three of Shreve’s paintings sold, affirming her choice to move from writing to painting by way of several years as a potter.
It was good to see Martha Tisdale’s watercolors again in the gallery and know she has not retired from the easel. Tisdale has a rich background in painting and knows her away around a graphics studio, having managed her family’s business, Macon Signs Inc., until her retirement.
Don’t miss your chance to see the “Figures” exhibition on display through Aug. 30.
Down the rabbit hole again
The Backlot’s Own Original Youth Actors (BOOYA) closed Sunday in Forsyth with a feverish rush for tickets to the last weekend performance of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.” Housed in the Rose Theater, BOOYA is open to aspiring actors from sixth grade through college, under the aegis of the Backlot Players.
Looking over the playbill, it is apparent these young thespians don’t lean too heavily on their parents or the adult staff of the theater for guidance. For instance, Rachel Hunter, who played an appropriately pompous Red Queen, has been on the stage since she was 4 and is now pursuing a nursing career. Jordan Harris, son of Laurie and Robert Harris, works as a behind-the-scene hero, for his art work and graphics appear in the program and on the posters. Theater is in these student actors’ blood, for many of their parents have been involved with the Backlot Players since its founding in 1994.
To market, to market
Joining Wesleyan College and the downtown initiative to offer locally grown produce at outdoor markets, the College Hill Corridor hosted the inaugural First Saturday Village Market on Aug. 2 in Mercer Village. Since Macon has been fortunate to have a mild summer, this is an excellent outing for the entire family to enjoy the shops, dine outside, play in the park and take home fresh vegetables and unique handmade craft items from the vendors lining the wide sidewalks. Russell, the daughter of Mary Frances and Jim Burt, was spotted busily trying out locally made treats.
This is second Sunday and that means bring your picnics and blankets to Washington Park at 6 p.m. for a concert by Same As It Ever Was, a Talking Heads tribute band. See you there!
Katherine Walden is an interior designer and freelance writer in Macon. Contact her at email@example.com or 478-742-2224.