Dig Deep, Rise Up by Laurie Popp

“The natural world, it’s where we come from, it’s where we will return.  As it goes so do we. Let’s take care of it.”

— Artist Statement from Laruie Popp

Tree Asylum # 1

This fiber installation will be on display during July and August in our Leo Reynolds Gallery.


Tree Asylum # 5

Tree Asylum #5




Artist Laurie Popp

Laurie Popp was born in Santa Barbara, CA, a magical place by the ocean.  She regularly spent all of her allowance at the pet store downtown.


Bunnies and Carrots

She studied Materials Engineering and then began a slow migration eastward to the hills of Tennessee.  

Doves on a Wire

She creates art in several mediums to tell the stories of the animals and their spaces that fill her life on her farm.


Mare and Colt

See more about Laurie and her work at her website, lauriepopp.com


Much to Be Discussed — Mary Dunn

The mixed media installation of artist Mary Dunn will be on exhibition in our Second Floor Gallery during July and August.


So Great a Cloud by Mary Dunn

Crocheted and knitted infant hats (acrylic and cotton yarn), Varied Dimensions

Below: Alternate view



Artist Statement

“I have an innate desire to visually record moments in time. This impulse manifested first as figurative drawings and paintings. Today, instead of recording literal moments, my work more often references something happening internally, its roots in the thoughts that occupy me daily as opposed to scenes positioned before my eyes. The external has also become a source, as I explore and highlight social or cultural phenomena through artmaking. While working mimetically remains an important part of my practice, much of my art has moved toward abstraction. The physicality of the body remains an important factor in my current work, although it may only be suggested.”



“The contemporary revitalization of craft media – particularly crochet, which has been traditionally practiced by women in the home – has influenced me to engage in a more craft- or textile-based approach. Crochet stirs memories of time spent in quiet moments with family and friends, and references a history of service and gift-giving. Textiles indicate clothing, invite touching, and imply protection and warmth. The action of crochet is also metaphorical – many loops suggest a community of individuals who, together, make a whole. Repetitive, tedious action leaves a record of invested time and labor.”


“Working in crochet has allowed me to move out from the wall, away from illusionistic space and into actual space. Formal arrangements of everyday objects or materials bring to mind the stuff of the real world; taken out of context, they begin to transform, conveying meaning beyond their function. Not only is my art made from commonplace things, I create it in my home, a fundamentally domestic space. Working surrounded by the effects of daily activity, my life and art become inseparable. Although some pieces are three-dimensional, I continue to pull from my drawing and painting background. Colored yarn replaces paint; string is a twisting, looping line, connecting back to a history of artists and craftspeople, as well as to my own creative beginnings.”

— Mary Dunn

Artist Biography

I spent my childhood in a small North Louisiana town surrounded by family, many of whom were constantly making beautiful things. My mom was my first drawing teacher, my grandmothers tirelessly crafted both family meals and family heirlooms, and my dad cultivated and arranged roses. I inherited their desire to create.

After graduating with a BFA in communication design and studio art, I moved to the Dallas area, where I worked as a magazine designer and illustrator and married my husband Christian. We then moved back to Louisiana, where we both earned MFA degrees from Louisiana Tech University. My focus has shifted away from design to fine art, but I continue to work as a freelance illustrator. My art practice includes painting, drawing, and craft work such as crochet, and I continue to incorporate techniques from my design background as part of my creative process.


“Portrait of the Artist’s Grandmother II”

For more information about Mary and her work, visit her website, marybdunn.com.


Ironic Design

June 2017

As part of his thesis exhibition and research to complete his MFA Degree, Blake Dodgen is curating an exhibit at the Gadsden Museum of Art titled Ironic Design.


This is a national juried exhibit and a thesis exhibit for Dodgen’s research to gather data about various uses of irony in contemporary art and design.



The exhibit features an array of disciplines showcasing different interpretations of irony.



The exhibit is ultimately a research component to determine how patrons react to irony and how it plays a crucial role as an element of contemporary design.



There will be a closing reception for Dodgen’s show on Friday, June 23rd from 5 PM – 7 PM at the Gadsden Museum of Art.



Your participation is welcome with this exhibit. Data Collection Surveys regarding patrons’ analysis of exhibition content can be found in the gallery.





An Open Heart Allows Blessings to Flow

An Open Heart Allows Blessings to Flow 

by Claire Lewis Evans


An Open Heart Allows Blessings to Flow showcases the work of Atlanta native Claire Lewis Evans.

Evans works with a variety of media and materials, but in recent years she has made sculpture her primary creative focus.

An Open Heart features colorful, large-scale mobiles made of physically real, handcrafted materials such as mulberry paper and bamboo.

These hovering sculptures serve as tangible reminders to seize the day and are intended to be observed in person, in motion.


This instillation opens June 2nd and will hang in the Museum until the end of the year. See more from Claire Lewis Evans at http://clairelewisevans.com.



Artist Statement

Art-making is a process of inquiry and discovery. I experiment and play with compelling physical materials and formal elements as a way of exploring and experiencing the world. My creative process is a dance of manifestation as works develop, evolve, and decay in time and space. There may be false starts, unexpected turns, and surprise destinations, but the making is a continual journey through material, method, and form. It is both a grounding and dynamic pursuit.

Making art is also an assertion of hope, a way to cultivate purpose, grace, and delight in a troubled world. While I endeavor to make work with aesthetic, intellectual, and physical integrity, a more personal goal is to make art infused with vitality and presence—qualities that make themselves felt. Art is a mirror that reflects and reveals our existence as living beings on this planet. I want to touch and move, to connect and participate in the exchange of creative expression that has given so much meaning, depth, and flavor to my life.

As creations, my work is made to be experienced. It is meant to cultivate attention and awareness; as such, it offers the possibility of being present in the moment and forming a deeper connection between the beholder, the environment, and the world.


Claire Lewis Evans is an artist and writer from Atlanta, Georgia, currently residing in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. She works with a variety of media and materials, but sculpture has been her primary creative focus in recent years. Her work has been the focus of several solo exhibits including Here We AreActualitiesPassages, and Signs of Life, an outdoor public art project created in partnership with Black Belt Bamboost, a grass roots advocacy group. Her work has been featured in numerous juried, invitational, and group exhibits throughout the U.S., and has received awards from jurors including John Henry, Carol Mickett and Robert Stackhouse, and Miranda Lash.

Claire Lewis Evans was a founding co-director of The Grocery, an artist-run studio, exhibit, and experimental performance space that made life in West Alabama much more interesting during its operation. She currently works and teaches at The University of Alabama and teaches art with the Alabama Prison Arts + Education Project, based at Auburn University. She holds an MFA in studio art from the University of Alabama, as well as an MA in communication and a BFA in studio art from Georgia State University.


Walking and Flying: Paintings by Sarah Landrum

“My work attempts to treat painting as a gradual, deliberative experience, both for myself and for the viewer.  Most of the paintings begin as simple still lifes, based upon ordinary objects in my studio and home. Painting mute, inert forms within a shallow space enables me to pose and attempt to answer specific questions about painting.”

“I work slowly on several pieces simultaneously. The images change over time as the painting process is  invaded by memories, history, current events, books I’m reading, or simply an overheard phrase.  The original forms disintegrate and transform through the painting process; the image unfolds through scraping, cutting, peeling, editing, and repainting. As time passes, each painting responds to others around it in the studio. I often remove paintings from their support midway through the process. This enables me to further experiment with deconstructing and reconstructing images.”

“My intention and the impulse behind each painting may not be obvious to viewers. My hope is that a meaning can unfold as they experience line, shape, and form, and that they can take some pleasure in deciphering the image through the lense of their own experience.”

— Sarah Landrum

Walking and Flying

“Solving a problem or having an idea while performing a recurring task or doing something mundane is a common experience for most of us. Much of the mental “work” of a painting occurs during repetitive mark-making and through stitching, scraping, and stapling. Repetitive actions such as walking, breathing, certain tasks,  and indeed much of the “boring” work of ordinary life, can free our minds and lead to flights of imagination.”



Sarah Landrum lives and works in Jacksonville,  Alabama, and Atlanta, Georgia. Since receiving her BFA in Painting from RISD (Rhode Island School of Design) in 1984, she has maintained her studio practice and exhibited consistently throughout the Southeast. As an arts educator working in communities and schools, she views teaching as a vital and inseparable part of her creative work. She has been the visual arts teacher at The Donoho School in Anniston, Alabama since 2005.

Click here to visit Sarah’s website

Southern Realism by Rachel Wakefield




“Through the use of observation and reference photography I create paintings that feature subjects immersed in bodies of water. Water surrounds the subject and represents the weight and pressure of life, but also makes us feel like we are dreaming — floating and free.”



“I want to recreate a quiet place where sound is muffled and vision is blurred — capturing those vulnerable moments we keep to ourselves. Though sometimes detailed and complicated, or simple and abstract, these intimate feelings that we have are the most meaningful parts of being.”


 – Rachel Ann Wakefield



The water is symbolic of the dominant weight and pressures of life while also juxtaposing the “floating,” still silence of such submersion.


Selfies: Paintings by Kathryn McGinley

Opening reception: April 7 from 5–7PM

On display in the Leo Reynolds Gallery




From the artist

I am a Florida based artist currently working on a collection of portrait paintings in acrylic ink on paper.

This collection of selfies acts as a social commentary on how we represent ourselves on the internet, our need to feel relevant, and on the vulnerability of portraying our individual lifestyles on the World Wide Web.

I implemented the single line drawing technique as one of the main elements to add another layer of abstract quality to the paintings. I love working in ink for its fluidity, vibrant colors, and building translucent layers of brush marks and blotching. This body of work has a fun and inviting energy and is one of my favorites to work with.

I received a B.A. in Art from the University of North Florida and have exhibited art throughout Florida. In addition to showing and selling, I’ve taught small art classes, had an internship as a volunteer artist with Art with a Heart in Healthcare at Wolfson Children’s Hospital, and currently volunteer at the Foosaner Art Museum and the Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts.

A Tale of Six Counties

(above) “Me and Kathryn-Anne” (Cuyahoga County) – Pamela A. Canzater


In celebration of Black History Month, the works of Pamela A. Canzater are on display in the Leo Reynolds gallery.


(above) “In the Midnight” (Portage County) – Pamela A. Canzater        


(below) “Walking with My Savior” (Portage County) – Pamela A. Canzater


Her exhibit, “A Tale of Six Counties; How One Black Family Nurtured Their Southern/Northern Daughter,” is a biographical walk through her life of being an African-American woman raised in six different counties from Alabama to New York.


(above) “Am I Black Enough?” (Queens County) – Pamela A. Canzater                                                

(below) “Bedtime Stories” (Perry County) – Pamela A. Canzater


An closing reception for the three current exhibits will be held on March 3, during First Friday Downtown.


Relics: New Works by Anita Stewart & Amanda Ann Palmer


On display January 21 through March 3, 2017

Opening reception January 21, 2017, 5-7pm

Closing reception March 3, 2017, 5-7pm

Palmer - Pedistals1

Anita Stewart’s Artist Statement:

My current work continues to reflect my interest in the theory that nothing ever leaves the universe and nothing new enters. I’ve also begun to think about the souls or essence or energy that temporarily inhabits our physical bodies as well as the bodies of other living entities. These tabernacles that once held life are very intriguing, especially as they begin to decay and reveal their depth.

When I began working with the boxes, I often thought of them as reliquaries.  What is a relic, in the traditional religious sense, if not part of a tabernacle? So the words began to become interchangeable, and I now see the boxes as keepers of relics and/or tabernacles – used and disintegrating ones, but tabernacles nonetheless.

Amanda Ann Palmer’s Artist Statement:

I started building this body of work as a way to examine my relationship with curiosity. This is only the beginning of my investigation and my first interest, the forest, seemed an appropriate place to launch.

When I remember being small, in the forest, the first thing that comes to mind is the feeling of pine sap on my fingers. I know it’s sticky and is going to take three days to wash it off, but I can’t help myself. I always pick up pine cones, needing to feel the prickle of the scales and admire the spiral that embellishes the bottom. The sense of touch is prominent in all my early forest memories. I can feel my feet dragging through the sea of pine straw in the thicket I used to play in with my brothers. We would make a collection of all the relics we found and put them on a shelf in our fort. The forest, my encyclopedia of texture, has held my attention since.

While working on this series, it became apparent that I was constructing an homage to a child’s curiosity.I am excited to explore curiosity in a broader way. I hope embracing it will allow me to move through this world with more empathy and generosity.

I would like to dedicate this series to Clementine, Max, Judson, Abe, Cora and Jim.

Call for entries Focus 2017

2017 FOCUS Photography Exhibition Calendar
March 1: Digital Images, entry form, and entry fee due
March 17: Artist Notifications will be emailed
April 1: All work must be delivered to the museum by 5pm
April 14: through May 29: Exhibition dates
May 5, First Friday: Opening reception
June 9: All work must be picked up or shipped out from the museum.

Official Rules:

Focus is open to all artists working in traditional or digital photography. Each artist may submit up to three works for consideration. Youth ages 14 and younger will be placed in a separate category.

Entries must not exceed 60” inches in any dimension and no entry may be smaller than 8”x 10.” Entries must be framed — sturdy, wired and ready for hanging. NO saw-tooth hangers, staples, or tape allowed. No frames with easel backing will be eligible for consideration. The Gadsden Museum of Art reserves the right to exclude any work not meeting presentation standards.

Entry fee is $10 per submission; three submission limit per person. Payments may be cash, check or money order payable to the Gadsden Museum of Art. No Refunds. All money collected will be used as prize money.

Images of work must be submitted digitally to gmagadsden@gmail.com. A blind jury will be judging your image so keep in mind all images must be high quality. Files must be JPG format 72dpi no more than 750 pixels on the longest side, and labeled ex Smith_John.jpg. Photographs will not be considered until all items are received: Digital images, entry form, and payment. Only winners will be required to fill out a W-9. W-9’s are available at irs.gov or can be picked up at the Gadsden Museum of Art. (If a photographer does not want to fill out a W-9 they will not be eligible for any prize money but will still be allowed to enter show.)

Once all digital images are submitted, a blind jury will review entries and select images for display. All artists will be notified via email regarding the acceptance of their work.

Cash prizes will be given to Best in Show, 1st place, 2nd place, 3rd place, and Honorable Mention award winners.

Artists are responsible for shipping and dropping off work. The Gadsden Museum of Art will not be responsible for any damage incurred in transit. All work must be shipped or hand-delivered no later than April 1, 2017. Late submissions will not be accepted. Frames must be wrapped for protection upon delivery.

(To be announced.)

Entry Form: Focus 2017 Entry Form Updated