Dolly the Goat finally found the perfect platform to tell her story. So did the Tin Man and the Politician’s Jug. Purposed only to unveil hidden stories without profit in mind, the three profound works of art are among over 250 uniquely expressed creations that compose The Great Folk Art Parade: Down the Lane to the Steffen Thomas Museum of Art exhibit in the Steffen Thomas Museum of Art.
Around 300 people flooded the museum’s folk art speckled lawn to explore the tangible stories for sale and on display by several folk art vendors during the opening festival Sunday afternoon.
“The opening festival exceeded all expectations,” said Museum Director Patricia DuBose. “We had people here from North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Florida, and Tennessee who came to shop with the vendors on the lawn and see the exhibition…We knew we were hosting something special when this event was planned, and the positive feedback we have received reinforces that!”
Acoustic strums from Nick Lewan, Johnny Roquemore, and Joan and Peter Ekstrom encircled the outside visitors with folk sensations while a strolling musician added a soft touch to those inside with his mountain dulcimer. Big Kev’s and Scoops Ice Cream provided eats for the public while they enjoyed the art.
Unconventional sculptures, nonconforming pottery, story-woven quilts, and inspirational images in this exhibition, curated by Peter Loose, decorate the West Gallery of the museum. So far, 19 pieces have sold of the 60% that are for sale.
“Vivid colors and a huge variety of art characterize this exhibition,” Dubose added. “The Folk Art show has more than doubled the amount of art that is on view here at the Museum… Our visitors are always amazed at the amount and variety of art made by Steffen Thomas, and this show adds over 250 more pieces to look at and admire.”
Because Steffen Thomas embraced the philosophy of free expression in his own work, the public can expect more folk art events in the future, but probably not as large as this.
“The success of the opening festival and exhibition is largely due to the efforts of folk artist and collector, Peter Loose,” Dubose commented. “He is a master at bringing people and art together, and we are deeply grateful for all he did to bring the Great Folk Art Parade to the Steffen Thomas Museum.”
The exhibition will run through Jan. 12, 2019 and will include a Collector’s forum on Nov. 8, an ornament workshop on Dec. 8, and a Sara Salon Talk by Peter Loose on the exhibition’s closing date. Call the museum to tour the exhibition as a group or to inquire of any of the pieces for sale at 706-342-7557.