Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

December 7, 2012

Legends the stuff of this exhibit

ASHLAND — A series of art displays created by a group of artist friends continues at the Thoroughbred Gallery in Ashland.

This installment, titled “Breath of Legends,” includes more than 40 pieces of art in the form of photography, paintings, costumes and jewelry created by four area artists: seamstremss Renee Schmutz-Sowards; painter and jewelry designer Jessica Brooks; and photographers Courtney Thompson and Erica Cleary.

For the first exhibit, conceived by Brooks, the women created art to celebrate the “Day of the Dead,” paying homage to the Mexican holiday that honors ancestors.

In the next exhibit, the theme was “The Five Elements: Earth, Water, Air, Fire and Spirit,” which included the human and artistic spirit among the components of live.

This show, which took three to six months to prepare, examines ancient myths and legends worldwide.

Schmutz-Sowards said she wanted to tackle this theme from the beginning of their collaboration.

“I always loved fairy tales, myths and legends, especially the Russian ones,” she said. “They’re darker. They border the Black Forest with German and their fairy tales are gut-level lessons that teach about the world.”

Schmutz-Sowards said the artists chose some of the more obscure legends to explore.

For instance, one of the five vignettes the artists created is devoted to Kumiho, which literally means nine-tailed fox but is prominent in Korean folklore as a shapeshifter that often appears to men as a beautiful woman who tempts men into marriage and ultimately eats their liver.

The kumiho appears in many Asian cultures with a slightly different lore.

While three of the artist had worked together on other projects, this was the first time Thompson had photographed their work.

She said Brooks had seen her work at the Pendleton Art Center and asked if she’d be interested in working with them and Thompson agreed.

Seven of the artists’ friends were recruited to model the clothing and jewelry, portraying the essence of the characters they represented.

It took two photography sessions lasting three or more hours to achieve the finished product. Shoots were in the upstairs of the Pendleton and at the Huntington Museum of Art.

The exhibit will be on view tonight during the First Friday art walk and will continue through the end of December. Pieces are for sale.

LEE WARD can be reached at lward@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2661.

Text Only
Local News
  • Families invited for Fun in the Park

     Free cotton candy, hot dogs and entertainment for an entire day is what Bridges Christian Church in Russell is offering local families during Fun in the Park this weekend.

    August 1, 2014

  • AEP reports stolen copper, fence damage

     All that glitters is not gold — sometimes, it's also copper.

    August 1, 2014

  • Probe of Fairview begins

    Four investigators from the state Office of Education Accountability spent much of Thursday interviewing school officials in a probe of alleged school law violations in the Fairview Independent School District.

    July 31, 2014

  • Grant helps Elliott County High School with $1.7 million geothermal renovation

    Elliott County School District Superintendent Dr. Carl Potter II remembers the night a few years ago when the lights went out in the middle of an Elliott County boys basketball game and interrupted it for some 20 minutes while the lights powered up.

    July 31, 2014

  • Heroin overdose deaths continue to rise

    The Kentucky state legislature passed a sweeping overhaul to its prescription drug law in the summer of 2012 after a flood of overdose deaths, making it significantly harder for people to access dangerous addictive drugs from doctors.

    July 31, 2014

  • Morehead man faces drug charges

    A Morehead man is facing multiple drug charges after taking possession of a suspicious package mailed to his home on Dillon Lane, according to the Kentucky State Police.

    July 31, 2014

  • Highlands’ Artists Market to begin today

    Up-and-coming artists are being offered a rare chance to show and sell their work during the First Friday art walk.

    July 31, 2014

  • Dogonline.jpg 'Educate and entertain'

    A local theater group is shooting for changing the area’s theater scene.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 07/31/2014 — What's Happening

    Local news

    July 31, 2014

  • News in brief, 07/31/14

    About 450 marijuana plants were confiscated during an eradication effort in Lawrence County on Tuesday.

    July 30, 2014