Exhibition To Feature Cox’s Art

Artist Betsy Cox, who operates Echo Valley Pottery in Glen Dale, has been honored to have two of her works chosen for an exhibition mounted as part of “For Freedoms,” a 50-state initiative.

The exhibit will be featured on display at Apartment Earth Gallery, located at 221 Hale St. in Charleston.

Co-founders Hank Willis Thomas and Eric Gottesman said they started “For Freedoms” in 2016 “as a platform for civic engagement, discourse and direct action for artists in the United States.”

They explained, “Inspired by Norman Rockwell’s 1943 paintings of the four universal freedoms articulated by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1941–freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear — we seek to use art to deepen public discussions of civic issues and core values, and to clarify that citizenship in American society is defined by participation, not by ideology.”

In the “For Freedoms 50 State Initiative,” which began in September and continues through November, concurrent decentralized art exhibitions and public events are being staged across the country. The organizers said they hope this initiative “will encourage broad participation in civic discourse and, through lifting up a multiplicity of voices, will spark a national dialogue about art, education, advertising and politics.”

The collaborative exhibition at Apartment Earth Gallery will take place at 5 p.m. Thursday.

For the open call exhibit, organizers said the participating artists were asked “to think about their place in West Virginia’s creative communities.”

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The late Harold “Hal” O’Leary, founder of Oglebay Institute’s Towngate Theatre and well-known actor and director, is being remembered throughout the region.

The Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company recognized O’Leary, who died on June 29, in the program for its recent production of August Wilson’s “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.” Officials noted that O’Leary performed in the theater’s 2009 production of the play, “Trying.”

Also mentioned were the late actors Barbara Russell and Don Marshall and the late director Marci Woodruff, who were from the Pittsburgh area.

The memorial tribute stated, “The theater community lost four remarkable talents recently, and Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company would like to express our sadness and acknowledge their contributions to our success.”

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Calling all artistically-minded Mountain State residents: West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice and first lady Cathy Justice are inviting state artists of all ages to create and submit ornaments to be displayed at the Culture Center in Charleston during the 2018 holiday season as part of the eighth annual Artistree project.

The deadline for submitting ornaments is Nov. 2. Participating artists also will be featured in the 2018 Artistree catalog.

The Artistree will stand in the Great Hall of the Culture Center and will be unveiled Dec. 4, as part of Joyful Night, the annual holiday celebration at the State Capitol Complex. Visitors will have the opportunity to see the ornaments throughout the holiday season. A special reception for the participants will be held from 5-6:30 p.m. on Dec. 10.

All ornaments will be kept by the Department of Arts, Culture and History.

Officials offered these guidelines: “Ornaments must be hand-crafted and suitable for hanging on a tree. Size and weight should be taken into consideration.”

Submissions may be mailed or hand-delivered to Elizabeth Yeager, West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History, The Culture Center, 1900 Kanawha Blvd. E., Charleston, WV 25305 ATTN: Artistree.

For more information, contact Yeager by calling 304-558-0240 or by email at Elizabeth.A.Yeager@wv.gov. Submission forms can be downloaded at http://www.wvcutlure.org/arts/Artistree/2018form.pdf.

Linda Comins can be reached via email at: lcomins@theintelligencer.net

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