What is it about the South? Whether your perspective is homegrown or distant, the landscape art of the South holds a fascination for all of us. The architectural distinctions, the history, the folklore, and the agricultural traditions all give flavor and nuance to Southern landscape paintings.
Gallery C has produced many exhibitions of Southern landscape paintings. Prestigious oil paintings of very early Southern painters such as Jacob Marling, William Frerichs, and Elliott Daingerfield are often found in the gallery. Later in the early 20th century art colonies such as Tryon and Black Mountain College sprung up in North Carolina. These places of inspirational beauty offered the opportunity for non-native artists such as Will Henry Stevens, Lawrence Mazzanovich and Harry Fenn to create abstract landscape art and modern landscape paintings.
The gallery is also a showcase for contemporary landscape oil paintings of the South. Paintings by Virginian Donald Lewis give us ethereal glimpses of the misty mountains of Virginia and the sleepy beach culture of Nag’s Head. An oil painting by Jimmy Craig Womble, “the savior of forgotten things,” will typically pay homage to a crumbling barn, kudzu covered junk cars, or abandoned farm silos. The pristine beauty of the New River and the arresting views of the Blue Ridge Mountains are captured in the landscape oil paintings of Tony Griffin.
These Southern painters have breathed life into the images of mossy trees, red clay, sea oats on the dunes, and tall pines. Their passionate portrayal of our region is an important contribution to American art.