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Sunday, February 12, 2012

Exhibit pays tribute to Black History Month


David Grace —

LaDonna West, whose ‘Planted by the Stream of Water’ is pictured at right, and William Fields, whose work is pictured below, are among the artists represented in the Black History Month exhibit at the Renaissance Center.

The Kingsport Art Guild is marking Black History Month with “Passion Revisited,”agroup exhibition by African-American artists in the main gallery of the Renaissance Center, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport.
The exhibit, featuring the work of LaDonna West, William Fields, Ann Woodford and Franchell Mack Brown, will hang through Feb. 24.
Admission is free.
West grew up in the rural Midwest and became fond of the rustic and simplistic beauty of the vast countryside, taking particular interest in its intricate patterns and brilliant colors. She began merging the aspects of contemporary design with traditional landscape and still-life painting and eventually developed a technique that became the eminent feature of her work. She calls this technique “mosaic maché”painting, a cross between mosaic art and paper maché and a process that yields a variety of textural and visual effects resembling things like tree bark, leather and natural stone.
Now a resident of Piney Flats, West has a bachelor of fine arts degree in graphic design from Howard University and has been a practicing artist for more than 20 years.

Fields was born and raised in Chilhowie, Va., prior to, during, and after the Civil Rights Movement. After graduation from Chilhowie High School, he attended the Virginia Art Institute in Charlottesville. Today, he works as student government advisor/leadership coordinator at the Blue Ridge Job Corps Center in Marion.
Woodford is a business person, a fine artist, a craftsperson and a grants writer. She is the founder and past executive director of One Dozen Who Care Inc., an organization whose mission is “to strengthen our leadership abilities and to create community bonds through common cultural interactions.”

Brown grew up in Washington, D.C., and attended the Duke Ellington School of the Arts. A fiber/jewelry artist now living in Radford, Va., she loves to create, and to take what seems like nothing and make it something.
For more information, call (423) 246-1227 or send email to