By Artist Leigh Svenson
On Exhibit: October 1st to November 30th, 2021
EVANESCENT: ev.a.nes.cent (adjective) Soon passing out of sight, memory or existence; the quality of being fleeting. From driftwood cathedrals being taken by the sea - to mercurial dune grass etchings and ebb tide carvings, these fleeting images I have captured during vacations at the Golden Isles of Georgia.
For the past five years, specifically St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island, I lugged along my big Bronica GS-1 medium format (6X7) film camera for treks to the beach. Usually I would get entranced with potential images and start to photograph while my wife looked for shells down the beach. Capturing the passage of time, both ephemeral and enduring, has long been of interest to me. It is my hope that you will study these photographs and those qualities will be revealed to you. -Leigh Svenson, Weaverville, NC
Women of Distinction: If you can see it, you can be it!
By artist Joseph Pearson
On Exhibit: August 9th to September 30th
Reception: August 17th 12-3pm in Blowers Gallery
Artist Statement: I created this body of work to honor the women in my family, women whose love, nurture and support made me who I am. These were women who worked hard at home and in the community. This desire was precipitated with the celebration of my last living aunt’s 96th birthday. (July 18,1922 - March 24, 2021). It led me to consider doing something to honor her and the women of her generation, including my mama and her older sister. Through this body of work I wanted to present a few of the many professional women from the local community as examples for younger women and girls as they strive to reach their goals and potential. It’s a way of giving back something of the nurture and encouragement I received from the women in my life.
I am Joseph Anthony Pearson. I am a resident artist at Pink Dog Studios in the River Arts District. I paint people as figures and portraits (as well as murals and pet portraits).I received the B.S. degree in Art education from Jackson State University and the Master of Education degree from William Carey College. I trained professionally for five years at the Art Students League of New York. A percentage of any donations and sales will be donated to local non-profit organizations.
Visit Joseph Pearson's website for more information: www.josephart.net/
International Photo Contest Exhibit
Exhibit Creators: UNC Asheville Study Abroad.
Artists on Exhibit: Nora Segurola, Ray Strong, Katie Tanner, Amanda Morse, Luiz Dantas, Veronika Mojik, James Kwak, Aly Pagano, Gloria Kirk, Jonathan Morris, Zax Milkereit, Logan Guarglia, Carter Kennedy,
Each year the Study Abroad office hosts an International Photo Contest where students, faculty and staff can submit photographs they have taken while abroad. The photographs in this year’s International Photo Exhibit offer glimpses into communities around the globe and represent the winners from the 2020 and 2021 photo contests. Sharing their overseas experiences with the larger UNC Asheville community helps bring the world to Asheville and aids our understanding of their international experiences. These images are placed on permanent display across campus at the conclusion of the show. Further details on Study Abroad's annual international photo contest can be found here. Please note that due to Covid-19, this year's exhibit will not have a reception nor individual presentations from our winners.
Urban Renewal in Asheville
On Exhibit: Spring Semester, 2021 in Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery View Exhibition Online in Accessible Format
Exhibit Creators: Ramsey Library's Special Collections, UNCA Professor Patrick Bahls, and students in Professor Bahls' UNCA course, "Urban Renewal in Asheville and Elsewhere" taught in Fall 2019.
This exhibit explores the local history, intents, and impacts of the Urban Renewal movement beginning with the U.S. federal Housing Act of 1949. It contextually presents individual cases of community change in the Asheville area through text, maps, and photographs, including with the controversial 1937 Residential Security, aka 'Red-lined,' map of Asheville's neighborhoods (see left-hand image). The entire exhibit is available online in screen reader accessible format here. Illustrative excerpt from this exhibit: [...] The impacts of urban renewal were not equitably felt by all citizens. Low-income neighborhoods, particularly those with high proportions of residents of color, were more often targeted for renewal. This is unsurprising, given longstanding racial inequities in the availability of funds for home purchase and improvement. (Richard Rothstein’s The Color of Law describes these inequities in great detail.) For instance, the Home Owners’ Loan Corporation (HOLC), founded in 1933, offered ways for homeowners facing default on their existing mortgages to buy into new mortgages with manageable repayment plans. To assess investment risk, the HOLC enlisted local agencies’ aid in surveying neighborhoods, color-coding neighborhoods according to the results of those surveys, with red indicating the riskiest areas for investment. Many neighborhoods that were “red-lined” were home to high percentages of Black residents, and few “green” neighborhoods were home to any persons of color. - text courtesy of Patrick Bahls
The Family Store: A History of Jewish Businesses in Downtown Asheville, 1880-1990
On Exhibit: August 10 - November 27, 2020 in Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery
Created by Jan Schochet and Sharon Fahrer, this exhibit "showcases a time when all downtowns were destinations of purpose, providing the items necessary for daily life, from groceries to clothing to restaurants." Previously the exhibit was located at sites around downtown Asheville, North Carolina where these former Jewish businesses used to thrive. Most of the documents, interviews and images used to create this exhibit are held in the Special Collections of D. H. Ramsey Library and were part of existing collections, or were donated as part of the research efforts of Schocket and Fahrer while creating The Family Store exhibit. Description from Special Collections' Web Exhibit, which is still available with all shown panels viewable online.
Scribes: Work in Image and Text from the Goodyear Arts Collective
On Exhibit: March 1st - 31st, 2020 in Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery
Exhibit Description: Image and text are the basic building blocks of meaning in visual language. Artists combine and contrast pictures and words to explore a wide array of possible meanings, to expand and expound on the way we “read” a work of art. The five artists in this exhibition, Amy Bagwell, Renee Cloud, D’Angelo Dia, Liliya Zalevskaya, and Jason Watson all play with image and text in their drawings, prints, designs, and installations. As active members of the Goodyear Arts Collective in Charlotte, NC, this show illustrates the many threads of their ongoing creative conversation. -Artist Jason Watson
MISSING: Stories of Urban Renewal in Asheville's Historic East End and Valley Street Neighborhoods
On Exhibit: February 1st - 27th, 2020 in Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery
"“Urban renewal” as a technical term dates back to the US Congress’s Housing Act of 1954, which granted the federal government authority to claim “blighted” properties from private owners and redevelop the land those properties occupied in the name of civic progress. Though many urban renewal projects were undertaken with the best of intentions, on the whole they resulted in the dislocation of millions from their homes and businesses, most powerfully affecting communities of color. MISSING, crafted by UNC Asheville students enrolled in Patrick Bahls’s first-year seminar on urban renewal, examines the impact of urban renewal on specific locations in the East End and Valley Street neighborhoods of Asheville, neighborhoods among several local predominantly African American neighborhoods impacted by urban renewal during the 1960s, ‘70s, and ‘80s." -Professor Patrick Bahls
A Progressive Escape by Greg Vineyard
On Exhibit: January 2nd - 31st, 2020 in Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery
"My conceptual illustrations are often inspired by current events, daily life observation, societal behaviors, psychology, and nature. "A Progressive Escape" is a visual interpretation of one lifespan, energetically displaying the duality of simplicity and chaos, and ultimately an arrival at some form of peace. While I don't personally view death itself as an "escape," I do think that if we're lucky, each stage of a life can provide some relief from whatever came before. As has often been said, life is about the experiences along the way, which I do think are cumulative." -Artist Greg Vineyard
BA Student Senior Group Exhibition
On Exhibit: December 4th - 15th, 2019 in Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery
Students will present a portion of their senior portfolio in Blower’s Gallery in Ramsey Library. This show is the last step for students to earn their Bachelor’s of Arts in Art. Students’ studio art concentrations include Ceramics, Drawing, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, and Sculpture.
Black Resistance in Western North Carolina Exhibit
Exhibit Open: October 24th - November 30th, 2019
Location: Blowers Gallery
Come see the history of African Americans in Western North Carolina through poster-sized photos from Ramsey Library's own Special Collections & University Archives. These photographs and others are available to be viewed online from this Special Collections Webpage.
Stories of the Snowbird Day School
On Exhibit: October 1st to 30th, 2019
Reception: October 17th, 2019 from 6 to 8pm
Where: Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery
The Stories of the Snowbird Day School project consists of 474 digitized photos and 35 oral histories, mainly in the Cherokee language. Additionally more than 1500 recovered documents from the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) highlight life in and around the School for students, teachers, staff and the Tuti Yi community. These are their stories.
Ramsey Library Staff Exhibit
Artists: Ramsey Library Staff
On Exhibit: July 15th to August 13th, 2019
Where: The Blowers Gallery in Ramsey Library
Come see the creative works of Ramsey Library's own staff: now until August 13th. Exhibit includes poetry, paintings, and photography by our Public Services Coordinator, Librarian Brandy Bourne, E-Resources Librarian Susan Terry, Head of Special Collections & University Archives, Librarian Gene Hyde, Technical Services & Resource Management Librarian Barbara Svenson, and our Information Literacy Librarian Jon Morris. Thank you everyone for contributing! Many of these displayed works were professionally printed using the library's own CrAFT Studio, open to all UNCA students, staff, and faculty.
Next month, starting August 16th, we will be highlighting an exhibit of works by UNCA alumni!
BA Senior Group Exhibition
On Exhibit: May 3 - May 11, 2019 in Ramsey Library's Blowers Gallery and in Highsmith Union's Intercultural Galler
Reception: Friday, May 3 from 6 - 8 pm.
Fourteen students will present a portion of their senior portfolio in Blower’s Gallery in Ramsey Library and Highsmith Intercultural Gallery. This show is the last step for students to earn their Bachelor’s of Arts in Art. Students’ studio art concentrations include Ceramics, Drawing, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, and Sculpture. The opening reception will be held on Friday, May 3rd from 6:00pm-8:00pm in both locations and the exhibits will be up May 3 – May 11, 2019.
Students included in the exhibition: Brianna Speight (painting), Deanna Brown (painting), Amanda Foor (painting), Ariel Shefsky (painting), Brent Boehmer (sculpture), Amanda Emery (drawing), David Hallyburton (drawing), Sydney Khan (drawing), Konrad Sanders (sculpture), Carly Gee (ceramics), Corabelle Brindle (ceramics), Natalie Rossetti (printmaking), Jonathan Freeze (printmaking), Karly Hartzman (photo)
Brown V. Board of Education
In Pursuit of Freedom and Equality: Kansas and the African American Public School Experience, 1855-1955
On Exhibit: April 4-24, 2019 Ramsey Library, Main Level
This exciting visual presentation uses images and text to share little known facts about the history of the Brown decision. Today few people realize that as early as 1849 African Americans fought the system of education in this country that mandated separate schools for their children based solely on race. In many instances these schools were substandard facilities with out-of-date textbooks and often no basic school supplies. What was not in question was the dedication of the African American teachers assigned to these schools.
This chronological look at the history of Brown leaves the viewer with a clear understanding that efforts still continue across the country to realize the dream of individuals and organizations that challenged a system that would deny them access to equal educational opportunity and their basic civil rights. This Exhibit was created and is circulated by the Brown Foundation for Educational Equity, Excellence, and Research.
Additionally part of this display are a collection of banners depicting the history of desegregation in Buncombe County. These posters can be seen on the walls surrounding the In Pursuit of Freedom Exhibition and will be available throughout the exhibition in Ramsey Library.
International Photo Contest 2018 Winners
Artist: Students, Faculty, Staff
On Exhibit: April 1-16, 2019
Ramsey Library Blowers Gallery is proud to host this exhibition of winning photos from the Study Abroad Office's International Photo Contest. A reception with the photographers will take place from noon-1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9, in the gallery. The exhibition and reception are free and open to everyone.
Photos were awarded in four different categories: cross-cultural, nature’s beauty, people, and reflections. The Chancellor’s Purchase Award photo, Llama en los Andes, was taken in Peru by UNC Asheville senior Virginia Taylor. The Chancellor’s Purchase Award Runners Up are My Kindergarten Students in China, by senior Amy Brown, and Fire in the Amazon, taken in Ecuador by senior Brenna Tull. Blowers Gallery is open during regular library hours.
Appalachian Studies Association Exhibit
On Exhibit: March 1-31, 2019
Part of UNC Asheville and Mars Hill University’s co-hosted 42nd annual Appalachian Studies Association Conference held March 14-17, 2019 on the UNC Asheville campus, this exhibit features materials from various Western North Carolina Archives and Special Collections.
The exhibit was assembled by Gene Hyde, Head of Special Collections at UNC Asheville, and Karen Paar, Director of the Southern Appalachian Archives at Mars Hill University.
Participating collections include UNC Asheville, Mars Hill University, Western Carolina University, Appalachian State University, NC Room at Pack Library, Western Regional Archives, Blue Ridge Parkway Archives, Warren Wilson College, Penland School of Crafts, Biltmore Industries, Carl Sandburg House, and Swannanoa Valley Museum.
Artist: David Hopes
On Exhibit: February 1-28, 2019
Perimeter explores the possibilities of the heavily textured canvas. In a usually narrative and representational painter such as myself, these works also investigate the question of how little is enough to make a coherent statement. All works are oil and mixed mediums (usually sand) on canvas. -David Hopes
Ad Lucem: Masking and the Resilience of a Human Spirit
Artist: Shawn Winebrenner
On Exhibit: January 10–30, 2019
My photography process involves dissecting the fundamental aspects of the things that are a part of my overall being — as a human, as an artist, and as a same-gender loving man of color. It works as an extension of my personal journey, commentary on human interactions, and the varied commonalities that unite us. My creative process is moving me closer towards better understanding the juxtaposition of who I authentically am, as an individual, and the person the world thinks I am. This body of work explores masking, a human coping mechanism used to conform to collective social pressures which often locks individuals into a continuous engagement of behavioral modifications. In an attempt to please others, maintain relationships, and hold appearances genuine emotions are frequently substituted for artificial ones. This work visually interprets the practice of masking, shown through a series of photographic images, as it relates to my own personal experiences. My hope is to initiate dialogue among people about similar life occurrences and establish connections as they relate the images to their own practices of masking.
What We Saw
On Exhibit: November 1–16, 2018
Images made for the Resettlement and Farm Security Administrations in the 1930s documented dire environmental conditions in rural America caused by drought, erosion, and crop-killing pests such as grasshoppers, all exacerbated by the collapse of the stock market and economic depression. The result was widespread need and desperation in the American heartland. Photographs by Arthur Rothstein and others provided visual evidence of the extent of the crisis as well as justification for new federal programs to help alleviate the suffering.
We're excited to host our 3rd annual IN CHARACTER event on 10/31 from 1PM-3PM. The library celebrates the stories and characters that populate our collective imagination. Halloween allows us to both playfully encounter fear and to engage with the characters inhabiting our culture. This event celebrates both. The library invites students, faculty and staff to enter our contest and have photos taken or simply enjoy our treats and Halloween and Day of the Dead resources. This is always a favorite event, and a fun afternoon addition to students' Halloween festivities.
The festivities continue on Nov 1 and 2, with a Dia de los Muertos display, to which all are welcome to contribute photos of those they would like to remember.
Special Collections recently added the Isaiah Rice Photograph Collection to our archives. Containing over 1,000 images taken by Isaiah Rice, the collection documents Asheville’s African American community from the 1950s through the 1970s. The collection was officially unveiled on October 23 at the second annual African Americans in Western North Carolina Conference at UNC Asheville.
Asheville native Isaiah Rice (1917-80), a World War II veteran, was active in community and civic affairs. He was a recreation supervisor at the Burton Street Community Center in his neighborhood, and served on the Asheville-Buncombe Community Relations Council. He was employed as a warehouseman and beverage salesman for 40 years. He often carried one of his many cameras, seizing countless opportunities to capture his family, neighbors, and community members on film. He photographed people at church, his neighbors and friends as they gathered for social events, folks attending parades and football games, as well as many scenes of people working and going about their business in downtown Asheville. His photos document a thriving African American community in urban Asheville during the mid 20th century.