Twelfth Annual Tougaloo Art Colony
July 28, 2008 |
In its twelfth year, Tougaloo Art Colony is still going strong. With more than fifty participants from all over the country and an international cast of instructors, the Art Colony is one of Tougaloo's premier events. Headed by colony director and chair of the art department, Johnnie Mae Maberry Gilbert, the Tougaloo Art Colony has grown in size and scope, now including artist/instructors from as far away as South America and classes ranging from life drawing to welding.
"Our target audience is basically artist/art educators, anyone who's interested in and has a love for art, and has always dreamed of producing it but never really got the chance," says director, Johnnie Mae Maberry Gilbert. "We offer art enthusiasts a week of workshops where they have an opportunity to have instruction in various disciplines, discuss their processes and just immerse themselves in art."
Each year, the Colony offers free, public events and this year was no exception. The "Hot Art" exhibit runs Monday through Thursday during the week-long event, and offers art produced by the artist/instructors, as well as the participants. On Thursday evening, nationally known artist, Brenda Singletary, an Atlanta native whose art can be found in many corporate and private collections, presented a lecture called, "No Guts, No Glory - A Profitable Alternative to Selling Fine Art." Singletary was impressed with both the Art Colony and with Tougaloo. "What an unbelievable campus," she exclaimed. "I hate I didn't have more time to spend here, but I'll be back!"
Gilbert says the Tougaloo Art Colony always has that effect on people. "Much of our participation stems from word of mouth," she explains. "People come, they have a great time and they tell everyone they know." After a week or so to catch her breath, gilbert will begin work on the 2009 Art Colony. "Oh, it never stops," she says. "You finish one and then you start looking ahead to instructors for the next one."